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Open Access Hydromorphone-induced Neurostimulation in a Yorkshire Swine (Sus scrofa) after Myocardial Infarction Surgery

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Opiates play an important role in the control of pain associated with thoracotomy in both people and animals. However, key side effects, including sedation and respiratory depression, could limit the use of opiates in animals that are lethargic due to cardiac disease. In addition, a rare side effect—neuroexcitation resulting in pathologic behavioral changes (seizures, mania, muscle fasciculation)—after the administration of morphine or hydromorphone is well-documented in many species. In pigs, however, these drugs have been shown to stimulate an increase in normal activity. In the case presented, we describe a Yorkshire-cross pig which, after myocardial infarction surgery, went from nonresponsive to alert, responsive, and eating within 30 min of an injection of hydromorphone. This pig was not demonstrating any signs associated with pain at this time, suggesting that the positive response was due to neural stimulation. This case report is the first to describe the use of hydromorphone—a potent, pure μ opiate agonist—for its neurostimulatory effect in pigs with experimentally-induced cardiac disease.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 2: University Laboratory Animal Resources, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 3: Department of Comparative Medicine, University of South Florida, Tampa, Florida 4: Comparative Medicine Resources, Rutgers–The State University of New Jersey, Piscataway, New Jersey 5: University Laboratory Animal Resources, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 6: Departments of Radiology School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 7: Departments of Surgery, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 8: University Laboratory Animal Resources, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Publication date: September 1, 2019

This article was made available online on August 26, 2019 as a Fast Track article with title: "Hydromorphone-induced Neurostimulation in a Yorkshire Swine (Sus scrofa) after Myocardial Infarction Surgery".

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  • The Journal of the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (JAALAS) serves as an official communication vehicle for the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science (AALAS). The journal includes a section of refereed articles and a section of AALAS association news. The mission of the refereed section of the journal is to disseminate high-quality, peer-reviewed information on animal biology, technology, facility operations, management, and compliance as relevant to the AALAS membership. JAALAS accepts research reports (data-based) or scholarly reports (literature-based), with the caveat that all articles, including solicited manuscripts, must include appropriate references and must undergo peer review.

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