Clarification Regarding Substitution of Previcox® for Equioxx®

A Message to Horse Owners*

It is against federal regulations for a veterinarian to prescribe or dispense the product Previcox®, labeled for use only in dogs, for use in horses because there is already a FDA-approved drug for use in horses (Equioxx®).

*Veterinarians and veterinary associations are free to copy and paste this text into newsletters, websites, etc.

May 11, 2010

The AVMA was recently made aware that there were questions surrounding the legality of treating a horse with Previcox® (firocoxib), a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) product labeled for dogs. Since there is a firocoxib product, Equioxx®, labeled for use in horses, then the canine product cannot be used in an extra-label fashion. Selecting the canine product over the equine product for any reason, including economic, is not acceptable. It is only if or when the approved equine drug were judged clinically ineffective for that labeled use that a veterinarian could use another animal approved drug, in an extra-label manner.

Some may have heard that economic reasons are valid reasons to use a drug in an extra-label manner – this is true only in that a veterinarian can select an approved human drug to relieve pain and suffering in a non-food animal even when an identical approved animal drug is available.

The spirit of AMDUCA is to allow veterinarians flexibility in administering therapies that will help relieve animal pain and suffering. The overarching premise for AMDUCA is that extra-label use is for filling a medical need when an animal's health is threatened.

Two excellent AVMA resources can be found on the following page:

Please contact the AVMA at 800-248-2862 if you have any questions or concerns.