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Pentoxifylline - Results?

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Never heard of it, so I went & looked it up :)


Wedgewood Pharmacy



Pentoxifylline is used in dogs to improve microcirculation and as a consequence diminish inflammation and enhance healing of many kinds of skin lesions including: ulcerative dermatosis of Collies and Shelties, dermatomyositis, ear margin seborrhea, atopic disease, and other skin diseases with underlying vasculitis. Healing associated with microvascular compromise may take weeks to months before any appreciable difference is seen. There are some differences of opinion regarding dosing frequency. The standard recommendation is once a day or every other day although recent pharmacokinetic studies performed in the dog support dosing three times a day.


apparently it has been around awhile:


Veterinary Partner


Pentoxifylline (Trental)

(for veterinary information only)


Brand Name: Trental


Available in 400 mg tablets




Pentoxifylline is a member of the methylxanthine class of drugs, as are caffeine and theophylline. Pentoxifylline is able to increase the flexibility of red blood cells, reduce blood viscosity, and increase the blood’s ability to break down blood clots. The overall effect is to make blood more liquid and to enable the red blood cells to travel deeper into tissues than they would normally be able to. This enables better oxygen delivery to tissues and improved circulation from smaller blood vessels (i.e., improved microcirculation).


How this Medication is Used


In humans, this medication is used in the treatment of peripheral vascular disease such as sickle cell anemia. In horses, it is used in the treatment of navicular bone disease where increased microcirculation is an important part of therapy. In small animal practice, its uses are only recently being explored.


This medication is used to enhance healing in chronic ulcerative conditions such as dermatomyositis of collies and shelties, and has been helpful in treating allergic reactions caused by physical contact with the allergen (i.e. contact allergic dermatitis). Ear margin vasculitis (blood vessel inflammation) can also be treated with pentoxifylline. More recently pentoxifylline is being used in the treatment of feline infectious peritonitis , plasma cell pododermatitis, and systemic lupoid onychodystrophy (a toenail disease). Pentoxifylline is being considered for many diseases where microcirculation is considered to be an issue so long as there is no increase in bleeding tendency.


Side Effects


Humans have reported headache and dizziness on pentoxifylline.

Patients who have demonstrated sensitivity to theophylline should avoid pentoxifylline.

Pentoxifylline should not be used in patients with pre-existing seizure disorders and seizures may occur.

The most common side effect is nausea/diarrhea/stomach upset.

It should be noted that veterinary experience is limited and much is yet unknown about side effects in small animals. Humans overdosed with pentoxifylline have demonstrated signs of flushing, seizures, hypotension, unconsciousness, agitation, fever, somnolence, GI distress, and heart rhythm changes.

Interactions with other Drugs


Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs may negate the beneficial effects of pentoxifylline but studies are conflicting.


Concurrent use of the quinolone class of antibiotics (including Enrofloxacinand orbifloxacin) will increase blood levels of pentoxifylline.


Concurrent use of the antacid cimetidine (Tagamet®) will increase blood levels of pentoxifylline.


Concurrent use of theophylline will lead to increased blood levels of theophylline.


Concerns And Cautions


Pentoxifylline should be kept protected from light exposure.


Pentoxifylline given to a nursing mother will be in her milk.


History of cerebral or retinal hemorrhage is considered a contraindication for pentoxifylline. This should make sense as pentoxifylline makes blood less able to clot and improves blood flow; just what one does not want with increased bleeding tendency.


Pentoxifylline is best avoided in patients with liver insufficiency as these patients have an increased bleeding tendency. Further, pentoxifylline is metabolized (removed from the body) through the liver and reduced liver function will lead to higher than expected medication blood levels.


Pentoxifylline is best avoided in patients with renal insufficiency.


Again, pentoxifylline should be avoided in patients with pre-existing seizure disorders.


It is our policy not to give dosing information over the Internet.


Date Published: 11/30/2003 12:03:00 PM

Date Reviewed/Revised: 11/26/2007


Pet Place More Info


Treatment is mentioned for lupus although not often.

Diane & The Senior Gang

Burpdog Biscuits

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Thanks Diane... I've been scouring the internet too hoping to find some "grey" connections.


My vet said it is the steroid found in Panalog. Interestingly, it seems that all of these treatments so far are prefaced by the vet saying "we don't know exactly why they work but they do in both humans and animals". I guess there are so many ways lupus can manifest and so many slightly different forms of lupus.


Cutie had been on tetracycline and naicianimide since January and her ears had never completely healed. All her other skin lesions did heal pretty quickly, but her ears were the first place the Lupus appeared and the hardest to heal. I have my fingers crossed that this will do the job.


I'm encouraged by your comments tbhound. Thanks!




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Something very interesting from the Wiki page:




"It is also a known inhibitor of Tumor necrosis factor-alpha.[4]"


TNF is important from a standpoint of tumor recognition (as the name implies). Drugs for humans used to manage rheumatoid arthritis (among other autoimmune disorders) such as Humira, Remicade, and Enbrel, are specifically designed to block TNF alpha. Of course, lupus being an autoimmune disorder- no big surprise there.


However, the list of caveats for all drugs that block TNF is pretty hefty. I don't think pentoxifylline is as effective at blocking TNF as the "biologics" mentioned above. But it's something to bear in mind; knocking back TNF using Humira, Remicade, and Enbrel increases the chances of certain cancers, as well as infection- particularly that from fungi.

Coco (Maze Cocodrillo)

Minerva (Kid's Snipper)

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My Scout was on pentoxifylline for about 3 years for vasculitis, one of his collection of auto-immune-related diseases, including SLO. He didn't show any noxious side effects. I'm sorry that I don't have the source of this excerpt that I copied some years ago:


Pentoxifylline and Ischemic Dermatopathies


Pentoxifylline (PTX) is from the group of drugs called methylxanthines. PTX is derived from theobromine. Pentoxifylline and other methylxanthines produce anti-inflammatory effects. PTX also improves blood flow through narrowed arteries because of the rheological property in which it allows red blood cells to change shape. It is not known if the improvement in patients with ischemic dermatoses are caused by improved blood flow (rheological effect) or via the antiinflammatory mechanisms.


PTX was first used in veterinary dermatology for familial canine dermatomyositis and contact allergy. More recently, it has been put forth as a treatment for atopic dermatitis and erythema multiforme.


In a clinical report in which PTX was used successfully to treat atopic dermatitis in dogs, the dose used was 10 mg/kg q12h, orally, although there was still some pruritus at 28 days of treatment. However, the results of pharmacokinetic studies showed that the half-life in dogs is short, <30 minutes, with only 30% oral absorption. Therefore, it is possible that improved efficacy might be possible if administered more frequently: Some veterinarians now give PTX to dogs at doses as high as 20-30 mg/kg q8h, orally.


PTX is available in a 400 mg tablet. Some veterinarians use dosing regimens that allow the use of a full tablet for a large-size dog. When tablets are broken or crushed for cats (e.g., 100 mg per cat) the taste is very unpleasant. Other side effects in dogs and cats include vomiting, nausea, excitement, and 'nervousness.' The author has not seen as much problem with vomiting as initially reported, perhaps due to insistence on giving the drug with food. The author has been 2 dogs which developed erythema multiforme (confirmed on histopathology) due to pentoxifylline.


The efficacy of PTX at UC-Davis has varied. It appears to have worked well in many cases of familial canine dermatomyositis (FCD), reasonably well in some cases of non-FCD ischemic dermatitis, and rather variably in vasculitis, EM, or atopic dermatitis.

Edited by EllenEveBaz


Ellen, with brindle Milo and the blonde ballerina, Gelsey

remembering Eve, Baz, Scout, Romie, Nutmeg, and Jeter

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