Muskuloskeletal pain and inflammation

Causes of musculoskeletal pain in horses include osteoarthritis, laminitis, navicular disease and bowed tendon. Equine musculoskeletal pain often results from inflammation, with its hallmark signs of heat, swelling and redness. While inflammation is a normal body response and an important part of tissue healing, pain associated with inflammation can become debilitating, leading to substantial negative outcomes. Relieving pain and managing inflammation can aid healing as a horse recovers from injury or disease and improve quality of life in horses experiencing chronic conditions.

Merck Animal Health Solutions

BANAMINE (flunixin meglumine injection) is the pioneer NSAID for use in cattle and horses.

BANAMINE brand of flunixin meglumine is the pioneer non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) approved for horses in the United States.

Clinical signs

  • Heat, redness and swelling of affected site
  • Lameness, changes in movement
  • Ear position—ears partially or fully back (not necessarily pinned) may be an indication of discomfort
  • Behavioral changes—a docile horse may become agitated
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Elevated respiratory rate
  • Sweating unexpectedly
  • Dilated pupils

Risk Factors

  • Participation in sport, performance or work activities
  • Advanced age
  • Genetic predisposition to inflammatory conditions

References

Stephen B. Adams, “Introduction to Bone, Joint, and Muscle Disorders in Horses,” Merck Veterinary Manual, May 2019, www.merckvetmanual.com/horse-owners/bone,-joint,-and-muscle-disorders-in-horses/introduction-to-bone,-joint,-and-muscle-disorders-in-horses.

Earl Gaughan, “Pain Recognition and Management in Horses,” Merck Animal Health, copyright 2018, www.merck-animal-health-equine.com/news/article/34.

Banamine Paste: Not for use in horses intended for food. There are no known contraindications to this drug when used as directed. Do not use in horses showing hypersensitivity to flunixin meglumine. The effect of Banamine Paste on pregnancy has not been determined. Concomitant use of Banamine with other anti-inflammatory drugs such as NSAIDs and corticosteroids should be avoided or closely monitored.

Banamine Injectable Solution: Not for use in horses intended for food. There are no known contraindications to this drug when used as directed. Intra-arterial injection should be avoided to avoid adverse reactions. Do not use in horses showing hypersensitivity to flunixin meglumine.  The effect of Banamine Injectable Solution on pregnancy has not been determined. Concomitant use of Banamine Injectable Solution with other anti-inflammatory drugs such as NSAIDs and corticosteroids should be avoided or closely monitored. In horses, rare instances of anaphylactic-like reactions some of which have been fatal have been reported, primarily following intravenous use.