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At a Glance
Assists breathing in specific airway diseases
Relaxes the airways making breathing easier
Generic for Brethine


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At a Glance
Assists breathing in specific airway diseases
Relaxes the airways making breathing easier
Generic for Brethine

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Terbutaline sulfate is a medication that is vital in assisting pets with specific airway diseases, especially those affecting the respiratory system. Veterinarians prescribe these tablets to address conditions such as allergic bronchitis, collapsing trachea, and various lung diseases in companion animals.

Composition and Mechanism of Action

Terbutaline sulfate is the active ingredient in these tablets. It belongs to a class of drugs known as beta-2 adrenergic agonists. These drugs work by stimulating beta receptors in the body, specifically in the airways. In pets with conditions like allergic bronchitis or collapsing trachea, terbutaline sulfate helps to relax the smooth muscles of the airways, allowing for improved airflow and easier breathing.

How Terbutaline Sulfate Tablets Work

Upon administration, terbutaline sulfate tablet activates beta receptors, resulting in bronchodilation. This process alleviates symptoms such as labored breathing and difficulty breathing, common in pets suffering from specific airway diseases. The medication also helps prevent the sudden onset of allergic reactions and manage chronic conditions affecting the respiratory system.

Indications and Major Use

Terbutaline sulfate tablets find their major use in treating pets with conditions like allergic bronchitis, collapsing trachea, and other bronchial diseases. These tablets are especially effective when labored breathing becomes a significant concern, providing relief and improving the overall respiratory function of the affected animals.

Dosing Information and Special Precautions

Veterinarians carefully determine the appropriate dosage of terbutaline sulfate based on the pet's weight, condition, and medical history. Pet owners must follow the prescribed dosing instructions diligently. Special precautions should be taken when administering the medication to pets with heart disease, high blood pressure, or an overactive thyroid gland.

Potential Side Effects and When to Contact a Veterinarian Immediately

While terbutaline sulfate is generally well-tolerated, pets may experience side effects such as increased heart rate, low blood potassium levels, and abnormal heart rhythm. Pet owners should contact a veterinarian immediately if they observe signs like pale gums, facial swelling, cold limbs, or unusual reactions. If the pet's condition worsens or there is difficulty breathing, seeking veterinary attention promptly is essential.

Interactions with Other Medications

Pet owners should inform the veterinarian about any other drugs or supplements the pet takes. Terbutaline sulfate may interact with certain medications, including beta blockers, tricyclic antidepressants, and thyroid supplements. Such interactions can affect the efficacy of terbutaline sulfate or other drugs, necessitating adjustments in the treatment plan.

Terbutaline sulfate tablets are a valuable therapeutic option for pets with specific airway diseases, relieving symptoms like labored breathing. Pet owners must adhere to the prescribed dosing instructions, be vigilant for potential side effects, and promptly seek veterinary assistance if any concerns arise. As with any medication, it's essential to consult a veterinarian for personalized advice tailored to the pet's health needs.

  • Asthma & Respiratory Pharmacy
  • Lannett Manufacturer
  • Oral Application
  • Cat Pet Type
  • Dog Pet Type

What is the drug terbutaline used for?

Terbutaline is a bronchodilator commonly used in veterinary medicine to treat respiratory conditions in dogs and cats. It belongs to the class of drugs known as beta-2 adrenergic agonists. In veterinary practice, terbutaline is primarily employed to manage bronchoconstriction associated with conditions such as feline asthma or canine chronic bronchitis. According to Richard Goldstein, former associate professor of small animal medicine at Cornell University, feline asthma is characterized by constriction of the airways. Terbutaline works by relaxing the smooth muscles surrounding the airways, thereby dilating them and improving airflow. Similarly, in dogs with chronic bronchitis, which is characterized by persistent coughing and airway inflammation, terbutaline can provide relief by alleviating bronchoconstriction. The drug is typically administered through oral tablets or as an inhalant, allowing for targeted delivery to the respiratory system.

Is terbutaline safe?

Terbutaline is generally considered safe when used appropriately under veterinary guidance for dogs and cats. As a beta-2 adrenergic agonist, terbutaline works by relaxing the smooth muscles in the airways. This makes it effective in managing conditions like feline asthma or canine chronic bronchitis. However, like any medication, terbutaline may have potential side effects. Patricia M. Dowling, a DVM from the University of Saskatchewan notes that animals may experience mild side effects in some cases. MSD Veterinary Manual notes that these side effects include increased heart rate, restlessness, and mild tremors. Severe adverse reactions are rare but can include vomiting, diarrhea, or allergic reactions. It is crucial for pet owners to follow the prescribed dosage and administration instructions provided by the veterinarian. Additionally, certain pre-existing medical conditions or concurrent medications may influence the safety of terbutaline use. Veterinarians carefully assess the overall health of the animal before prescribing terbutaline and may adjust the dosage accordingly.

Is terbutaline a steroid?

Terbutaline is not a steroid. It belongs to the class of beta-2 adrenergic agonists and is used as a bronchodilator to alleviate conditions like feline asthma or canine bronchitis. Steroids, specifically corticosteroids, are a separate class of medications with anti-inflammatory properties. Two examples of corticosteroids commonly used in veterinary medicine for respiratory conditions in dogs and cats are prednisone and dexamethasone. Prednisone is often prescribed orally and is converted into its active form, prednisolone, in the liver. petMD notes that Dexamethasone is available in various forms including oral tablets and injectable solutions. While both terbutaline and corticosteroids are employed to manage respiratory issues, they have different mechanisms of action. Terbutaline acts as a bronchodilator that relaxes the smooth airway muscles while corticosteroids like prednisone and dexamethasone reduce inflammation by modulating the immune response.

What is the antidote for terbutaline?

There isn't a specific antidote for terbutaline toxicity in dogs and cats, and treatment is generally supportive. In cases of accidental overdose or adverse reactions, immediate veterinary attention is crucial. The veterinarian may employ various measures to manage symptoms and minimize the drug's effects on the animal's system. Activated charcoal may be administered orally to help absorb the terbutaline in the gastrointestinal tract, preventing further absorption into the bloodstream. Intravenous fluids may be used to maintain hydration and support kidney function, especially if the animal is experiencing vomiting or diarrhea. In severe cases, where there is a risk of cardiac complications due to terbutaline's effects, the veterinarian may administer medications like timolol or atenolol. These drugs, known as beta-blockers, can counteract the excessive stimulation of the heart caused by terbutaline, helping to stabilize the cardiovascular system.

What happens if you give too much terbutaline?

An excess of terbutaline in dogs and cats, commonly used for respiratory conditions, can induce adverse effects. Symptoms of an overdose may encompass heightened heart rate, restlessness, tremors, and potentially life-threatening outcomes like seizures or arrhythmias. Pets with pre-existing heart issues may be at increased risk. Elevated blood pressure and electrolyte imbalances could also manifest. In cases of suspected overdose, prompt veterinary attention is crucial. Treatment typically involves supportive measures such as intravenous fluids, vital sign monitoring, and administration of medications to counteract terbutaline's effects.

How long is terbutaline effective?

Terbutaline's effectiveness in animals varies depending on factors such as the formulation and the respiratory condition. In veterinary medicine, it is often administered through inhalation therapy or oral tablets to manage conditions like asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Inhaled terbutaline tends to have a quicker onset of action, providing relief within minutes, but its effects may last for only a few hours. Oral formulations may have a longer duration of action, typically up to 6 hours, but individual variations exist. The frequency of administration is determined by the severity of the respiratory condition and the veterinarian's prescription.

Terbutaline Sulfate

Terbutaline, belonging to the beta-agonists class of drugs, is a bronchodilator. The medication is chiefly indicated for the treatment of bronchial disease (such as asthma, tracheobronchitis), allergic bronchitis, slow heart rate, certain lung conditions (e.g., pulmonary edema), and collapsing trachea. The active ingredient in the medication, terbutaline, works by stimulating type 2 beta-adrenergic receptors. This stimulation of beta-2 receptors makes the muscle relax and dilates the airways and blood vessels. This action is also effective to slow down or stop premature uterine contractions and labor.ย 

Terbutaline should not be used in animals with known hypersensitivity or allergy to the drug. Terbutaline should be used cautiously in animals with diabetes, high blood pressure, overactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism), animals taking thyroid supplement (L-thyroxine) or those with a seizure disorder or epilepsy. Terbutaline should be avoided if any heart rhythm abnormalities are present. Terbuatine may interact with other medications. Consult with your veterinarian to determine if other drugs your pet is receiving could interact with terbutaline. Such drugs include certain antidepressants and anesthetics.

The medication should not be used in animals with known hypersensitivity, high blood pressure, allergy to the drug, diabetes, hyperthyroidism, heart rhythm abnormalities, or those with seizure disorders. The interaction of terbutaline with other medications cannot be ignored. The medication should be used with caution when used in animals taking thyroid supplements (L-thyroxine). Drug interactions with antidepressants and anesthetics are also reported. It is advised to inform the veterinarian or pharmacist about the medications the pet is taking. Store the medication at room temperature, away from excess heat, moisture, and light.ย 

The medication is available in 2.5 mg and 5 mg tablets and in 1 mg/ml injectable form as well as an inhaler form. The standard dosage of the injectable form for cats and dogs is 0.005 mg/lbs (0.01 mg/kg) every 4 โ€“ 6 hours. For dogs, the tablet form is dosed at 1.25 to 5 mg/dog thrice a day and 0.05 โ€“ 0.1 mg/lbs (0.1 to 0.2 mg/kg) twice a day for cats.ย 

Use as directed by your veterinarian.

Store tablets at room temperature in a tight, light-resistant, childproof container.

Terbutaline is manufactured by Lannett

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Cheaper than my vet; a little less convenient

I was really excited at my original purchase - I did not realize the price quoted was per-PILL. The real PetCareRx price was still much better than what my vet charged (she apologized for her rates, but said "this stuff has gone up a LOT recently").PetCareRx called me to ask if I really wanted to order only one pill. They explained the pricing, and let me change the order to 40 pills, which was enough to allow free shipping.I dose my cat with 1/4 pill twice a day. My vet pre-cuts the pills - I'll have to do that myself with the PetCareRx set, but I have a decent pill-splitter already.

bobbane recommends this item.
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