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Vet Med (Auckl)


Use of firocoxib for the treatment of equine osteoarthritis.


Donnell JR, Frisbie DD
Vet Med (Auckl). 2014; 5:159-168.
PMID: 32670856.


This review presents the pathogenesis and medical treatment of equine osteoarthritis (OA), focusing on firocoxib. Inhibition of prostaglandin E remains a fundamental treatment for decreasing clinical symptoms (ie, pain and lameness) associated with OA in horses. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which inhibit the production of prostaglandin E from the arachidonic acid pathway, continue to be a mainstay for the clinical treatment of OA. Firocoxib is a cyclooxygenase (COX)-2-preferential NSAID that has been shown to be safe and to have a 70% oral bioavailability in the horse. Three clinical reports identified symptom-modifying effects (reduction in pain and/or lameness) in horses with OA administered the once-daily recommended dose (0.1 mg/kg) of oral firocoxib following 7 days of administration. Other reports have suggested that a one-time loading dose (0.3 mg/kg) of firocoxib provides an earlier (1-3 days) onset of action compared to the recommended dose. It is noteworthy that OA disease-modifying effects have been reported in horses for other COX-2-preferential NSAIDs (meloxicam and carprofen), but have not been attributed to firocoxib due to a lack of investigation to date.