Originally Posted by Bluebird
I am a little bit concerned that Dexamethasone seems to be freely available in the USA. In the UK it is only available on prescription from a vet.
Corticosteroids occur naturally and help humans and animals to remain healthy and well. Increasing the amount of corticosteroid is a way of treating a number of different conditions which cause inflammation .
It is used to reduce inflammation and to treat a number of different diseases of the immune system.
Benefits of being on this drug can include relief from pain, inflammation and swelling.
But if it is not used properly and indiscriminately, it can cause some horrendous side effects which in worst case scenario, could be fatal (in humans as well as animals). When I was trained, it was drummed into me that any use of steroids needs monitoring and they can't just suddenly be stopped either.Do tell me if things are different outside ofthe UK? I am not criticising but I am just a little taken aback that you seem to be able to just buy steroids as required and treat horses with them if you think they need them.
LIke Cheri said, Dex is not handed out readily. We are able to keep dex on hand only due to a strong relationship with our vets that goes back many years. It's not that easy to get a bottle otherwise. As for the horrific side effects, I've seen it first hand, and it came at the hands of a vet, not owner. This vet is very good, well known, but he made a mistake one day, and didn't take the temp of the horse before giving a shot of dex. The horse had to be put down after about a week of horrible suffering. It became apparent there was nothing that could be done.
It's a beneficial drug, but in the wrong hands, or in inexperienced hands, can be fatal. The deal I mentioned was an unfortunate mistake, but I learned do not ever give when a fever is present. Also, you have to understand how to taper off the drug. I had to do it with my border collie when a rattler bit her. It saved her life.