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Side effects suspected to be related to doxycycline use in cats
  1. B. S. Schulz, Dr. med vet., Dipl. ECVIM-CA1,
  2. S. Zauscher, Dr. med. vet.1,
  3. H. Ammer, Prof., Dr. med. vet., Dr. med. vet. habil.2,
  4. C. Sauter-Louis, Dr. med. vet., PhD3 and
  5. K. Hartmann, Prof., Dr. med. vet., Dr. med. vet. habil., Dipl. ECVIM-CA1
  1. 1Clinic of Small Animal Medicine, Ludwig Maximilian University Munich, Veterinaerstr. 13, Munich 80539, Germany
  2. 2Institute of Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmacy, Ludwig-Maximilian University Munich, Koeniginstr. 16, Munich 80539, Germany
  3. 3Clinic for Ruminants, Ludwig Maximilian University Munich, Sonnenstrasse 16, Oberschleissheim 85764, Germany
  1. E-mail for correspondence: B.Schulz{at}

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Doxycycline is a newer antibiotic derivative of the tetracycline family, and is frequently prescribed in small animal medicine. The most commonly described doxycycline-induced side effects in dogs and cats include disturbances of the gastrointestinal tract, dental discolouration and hepatotoxicity. The aim of the study was to investigate the incidence of doxycycline-related adverse reactions in a large number of cats.

Cats that had received doxycycline between 2000 and 2007 were identified by search of the electronic data base. Patients were included, if owners had presented their cat for a recheck, or if they had been interviewed by telephone (only cats presented in 2004 or later). The following data was recorded and tested for correlation with side effects: signalment (age, gender), general wellbeing, indications for therapy, clinical signs, increase in alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activityi, doxycycline preparation (doxycycline-hyclate or doxycycline-monohydrate), dosing (once or twice daily), dosage (calculated per kg bodyweight), route of administration (oral or parenteral), duration of therapy and concurrent medications. The influence of additional drugs was evaluated, if these had been given to more than 5 per cent of patients. Included were amoxi­cillin-clavulanic acid, enrofloxacin and marbofloxacin, prednisolone and dexamethasone, bromhexine, terbutaline, an antiviral antibody preparationii and a group of drugs including gastric protectants and antiemetics (sucralfate, misoprostol, cimetidine, famotidine, ranitidine, dimenhydrinate, metoclopramide and maropitant.

Binary logistic regression was used for calculation of the influence of signalment, doxycycline dose and preparation, dosing, clinical signs and concurrent medications. The influence of the route of administration was evaluated with χ2 test and Fisher's …

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