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Theophylline and aminophylline are from a group of drugs called xanthine bronchodilators. Other related drugs include theobromine and caffeine. These drugs have a number of pharmacologic effects including relaxation of bronchial smooth muscle, bronchial anti-inflammatory actions, central nervous system stimulation, mild diuresis, increased gastric acid secretion and mild cardiac stimulation. The mechanism of action is through the inhibition of phosphodiesterase which increases cyclic-AMP and endogenous epinephrine. Increased levels of c-AMP may also decrease histamine release. The respiratory anti-inflammatory effects of theophylline may occur at a lower dose than that needed for bronchial smooth muscle relaxation.
Theophylline is well absorbed orally and is metabolized by the liver.
Theophylline is used as a bronchodilator in both dogs and cats to treat bronchoconstriction and inflammation associated with chronic inflammatory lower airway disease and feline asthma. Bronchodilators such as theophylline may be used with corticosteroids, and the use of a bronchodilator may permit a lowering of the dose of the corticosteroids. Theophylline is also used to treat both dogs and cats with collapsing trachea, intrathoracic airway collapse and pulmonary edema.
Phosphodiesterase inhibitor bronchodilator
Dogs and Cats
May Be Prescribed by Vets for:
Bronchodilation and respiratory anti-inflammatory
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Barbara Forney, VMD
Dr. Barbara Forney is a veterinary practitioner in Chester County, Pennsylvania. She has a master's degree in animal science from the University of Delaware and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine in 1982.
She began to develop her interest in client education and medical writing in 1997. Recent publications include portions of The Pill Book Guide to Medication for Your Dog and Cat, and most recently Understanding Equine Medications published by the Bloodhorse.
Dr. Forney is an FEI veterinarian and an active member of the AAEP, AVMA, and AMWA.
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This content is intended for counseling purposes only. This content is informational/educational and is not intended to treat or diagnose any disease or patient. No claims are made as to the safety or efficacy of mentioned preparations. The compounded medications featured in this content have been prescribed and/or administered by prescribers who work with Wedgewood Pharmacy. You are encouraged to speak with your prescriber as to the appropriate use of any medication. Wedgewood Pharmacy’s compounded veterinary preparations are not intended for use in food and food-producing animals. All product and company names are trademarks™ or registered® trademarks of their respective holders. Use of them does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by them.
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