What is pimobendan, and how does it work?
Pimobendan (brand name: Vetmedin®) is a heart medication used to treat dogs with congestive heart failure (CHF), usually caused by either dilated cardiomyopathy or valvular insufficiency. It is used ‘off label’ or ‘extra label’ in cats to treat heart failure.
How is pimobendan given?
Pimobendan is given by mouth in the form of a tablet on an empty stomach. This medication should take effect in 1 to 2 hours; however, because effects may not be visible, laboratory tests may be required to determine whether the medication is working.
What if I miss giving my pet the medication?
If you miss a dose, give it when you remember, but if it is close to the time for the next dose, skip the dose you missed and give it at the next scheduled time, and return to the regular dosing schedule. Never give your pet two doses at once or give extra doses.
Are there any potential side effects?
The most common side effects include gastrointestinal effects such as decreased appetite, and diarrhea. Other possible side effects include lethargy and difficulty breathing This short-acting medication should stop working within 24 hours, although effects can be longer in pets with liver or kidney disease.
Are there any risk factors for this medication?
Pimobendan should not be used in pets that are allergic to it. It should also be avoided in pets with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, aortic stenosis, or other conditions where an increase in cardiac input is inappropriate. Use this medication with caution in pets with uncontrolled abnormal heart rhythms. It is unknown if this medication is safe for young, breeding, pregnant, or lactating pets, or in pets with congenital heart defects, diabetes, or other metabolic disorders, so it should be used with caution in these cases.
How do I store pimobendan?
This medication should be stored at room temperature and be protected from light.
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