In a new study that has been recently published, RVC researchers found that the drugs omeprazole and maropitant, which are used to treat stomach ulcers or vomiting/nausea respectively, are prescribed very frequently in dogs being treated in a veterinary hospital. Although this was always being done to try to help dogs that were ill, the researchers found it was probably unnecessary in some cases because the dogs did not have a condition that would respond to those drugs. Although there was no evidence that this caused harm to any dogs, the results highlight the importance of considering existing clinical guidelines for the use of drugs in veterinary medicine to try to ensure dogs only receive the drugs needed to treat their condition.
Two veterinary nurses, Rachel McCormack and Louise Olley, collected all of the data used in this study. This was particularly important because Rachel and Louise worked in the wards where the dogs were hospitalised, so they were able to make sure that data were accurate and collected in a timely fashion. Their involvement in the study made it possible to collect high quality data prospectively, which is often very difficult in the setting of veterinary clinical practice.
McCormack, R., Olley, L., Glanemann, B.; Swann, J W.
Prospective observational study of the use of omeprazole and maropitant citrate in veterinary specialist care. Sci Rep 10, 15727 (2020).