Acupuncture to Reduce General Anesthesia (AAEP 2011)

Electroacupuncture-treated horses exhibited a significantly deeper depth of anesthesia compared to controls.

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After reading about a study in which electroacupuncture reduced dogs’ need for general anesthetics for some surgical procedures, a research team wondered if the same might be true for horses.

“Inhalant anesthetics are commonly used to maintain general anesthesia in horses,” explained Laura Romanò, DVM, a private practitioner from Italy, during the 2011 American Association of Equine Practitioners annual convention held Nov. 18-22 in San Antonio, Texas.

However, compared with other species, horses have a higher risk of cardiac (heart) problems and myopathy (muscle problems) associated with general anesthesia. Thus, reducing the amount of anesthetic required in horses could minimize these undesirable side effects

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Written by:

Christy West has a BS in Equine Science from the University of Kentucky, and an MS in Agricultural Journalism from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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