01701-A: Determining the Effect of Pain Medication on Immune Function: Part 1
Grant Status: Open
Grant Amount: $12,960
Dr. Amy Elizabeth DeClue, DVM, MS, University of Missouri, Columbia
February 1, 2012 - January 31, 2013
Breed(s): -All Dogs
Research Program Area: Immunology and Infectious Disease
Abstract Opioids are often used to treat pain in many situations, including during the post-operative period and often in dogs with a high risk for infection. In addition to providing excellent pain control, opioids can directly modulate the immune system resulting in either stimulation or suppression of immune system function. In other species, some opioids promote detrimental aspects of the immune response to infection while other opioids have minimal detrimental effects. Thus, it is possible that the selection of intra-and post-operative opioids could affect the incidence of post-operative infection in dogs. Despite extensive work in other species supporting the profound immune system effects of opioids, to date there is no published information pertaining to the effects of opioids on immune function in dogs. In this investigation, we will evaluate the effects of 3 of the most commonly used opioids in dogs on immune function. Since hundreds of thousands of dogs undergo surgery or suffer trauma necessitating administration of opioids every year, and the postoperative infection rate in dogs has been reported as high as 27%, the results of this study could have a dramatic and widespread impact on canine health.
Publication(s)Manuscript in preparation.