(for veterinary information only)
BRAND NAME: ADEQUAN
The active ingredient in Adequan® is polysulfated GAG (mostly chondroitin sulfate) extracted from cow tissue (the trachea, to be exact).
HOW THIS MEDICATION IS USED
In treating arthritis, injections are given twice a week for 4 weeks for a maximum of eight injections. Injections are given intramuscularly. Dogs, cats, and horses are the usual patients.
There is another more controversial use for this medication and that is in the treatment of Feline Idiopathic Cystitis. One of the theories of this very complicated syndrome is that the GAG’s which line the urinary bladder and help protect the bladder tissue from the irritating urine it holds become depleted. By giving a GAG injection, they may be restored thus helping to resolve the urinary discomfort associated with this syndrome. We know that in humans with interstitial cystitis, pentosan polysulfate sodium, a synthetic GAG analog, 38% of affected people showed a greater than 50% improvement in urinary symptoms (while only 18% receiving placebo showed similar improvement). Feline Idiopathic Cystitis has been described as one of the great mysteries of veterinary medicine. No single treatment has emerged as “best” and until one does, this theory seems as good as any. GAG injections are thus sometimes used in therapy for this condition, though, at present, it is not clear if this treatment is effective.
In a study of 24 dogs receiving injections, one developed a painful injection site, one developed diarrhea, and one developed a tendency toward increased bleeding. All side effects were classified as mild and none required treatment.
INTERACTIONS WITH OTHER DRUGS:
None known, in fact, it seems to make an excellent combination with other arthritis treatments for pets.
CONCERNS AND CAUTIONS:
This medication has not been studied in pregnant or lactating animals.
Because polysulfated GAG’s are similar in structure to the anticoagulant, heparin,
When doses of approximately 7x the recommended dose were used, normal dogs developed enlarged kidneys. Because of this, caution is recommended when using this product in patients with kidney disease.
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Page last updated: 3/30/2017