Pharmacokinetics of ketorolac tromethamine in horses after intravenous, intramuscular, and oral single dose administration

Alexandra Walsh Bianco, Purdue University


Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are an integral component of equine analgesia, yet currently available NSAIDs are both limited in their analgesic efficacy and have adverse effects. The NSAID ketorolac tromethamine (KT) is widely used in humans as a potent morphine-sparing analgesic drug but has not been fully evaluated in horses. The purpose of this study was to determine the pharmacokinetic profile of KT in horses after intravenous (IV), intramuscular (IM), and oral (PO) administration. Nine healthy adult horses received a single 0.5 mg/kg dose of KT via each route of administration. Plasma was collected up to 48 h post-administration and analyzed for KT concentration using HPLC-MS-MS. Non-compartmental analysis of IV dosage indicated a mean plasma clearance of 8.4 (mL/min)/kg and an estimated mean volume of distribution at steady state of 0.77 L/kg. Non-compartmental analysis of IV, IM and PO dosages indicated mean residence times of 2.0, 2.6, and 7.1 h, respectively. The drug was rapidly absorbed after IM and PO administration and mean bioavailability was 71 and 57% for IM and PO administration, respectively. Adverse effects were not observed after IV, IM and PO administration. More studies are needed to evaluate the analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of KT in horses.




Taylor, Purdue University.

Subject Area

Pharmacology|Veterinary services

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