Veterinary Drug Handbook (VDH) is the reference veterinarians turn to when they want an independent source of information on the drugs that are used in veterinary medicine today.


Note: Theophyllines have a low therapeutic index; determine dosage carefully. Because ofaminophylline/theophylline's pharmacokinetic characteristics, it should be dosed on a lean bodyweight basis in obese patients. Dosage conversions between aminophylline and theophylline can beeasily performed by using the information found in the Chemistry section above. Aminophyllinecauses intense local pain when administered IM and is rarely used or recommended via this route.

Dogs: Dog

a) 10 mg/kg PO, IM, or IV q8h (Kirk 1986)
b) 10 mg/kg PO (aminophylline) q8h; 5-7 mg/kg (theophylline) q8h PO (Roudebush1985)
c) 6 - 11 mg/kg PO, IM or IV tid (Morgan 1988)
d) 20 mg/kg PO using sustained-release theophylline tablets (Theo-Dur®; Key
Pharmaceuticals) q12h (Koritz, Neff-Davis, and Munsiff 1986)

Cats: Cat

a) 4.25 mg/kg theophylline (5 mg/kg aminophylline) PO q8-12h (McKiernan et al. 1983)
b) 4 mg/kg IM, PO bid (Morgan 1988)
c) 25 mg aminophylline PO (1/4 or one 100 mg tablet) bid-tid (Noone 1986)

Horses: Horse

Note:Intravenous aminophylline should be diluted in at least 100 ml of D5W or normal salineand administered slowly (not > than 25 mg/min).
a) 4 - 7 mg/kg PO tid (Robinson 1987)
b) 10 - 15 mg/kg PO theophylline bid; or up to 15 mg/kg given slowly IV. Monitor serumlevels; do not exceed 15 micrograms/ml. (Beech 1987)
c) Loading dose of 12 mg/kg PO (theophylline), followed by maintenance doses of 5mg/kg PO bid (Button, Errecalde, and Mulders 1985)
Monitoring Parameters -
  • 1) Therapeutic efficacy and symptoms of toxicity
  • 2) Serum levels at steady state.The therapeutic serum levels of theophylline in humans aregenerally described to be between 10 - 20 micrograms/ml. Therapeutic and toxic levelshave not been firmly established in veterinary species, so the human values should be usedas a guide (Note: Some recommend not exceeding 15 micrograms/ml in horses).
    Client Information - Give dosage as prescribed by veterinarian to maximize the drug's benefit.
    Dosage Forms/Preparations/FDA Approval Status/Withholding Times - Veterinary-Approved Products: None
    Human-Approved Products: The listing below is a sampling of products and sizes available;consult specialized references for a more complete listing.
    Aminophylline Tablets 100 mg (78.9 mg theophylline), 200 mg (158 mg theophylline); (Rx);225 mg (178 mg theophylline) controlled release tablets (Rx)
    Aminophylline Injection 25 mg/ml (19.7 mg/ml theophylline) in 10 ml, & 20 ml vials amps andvials); (Rx)
    Aminophylline oral liquid 105 mg/5 ml (90 mg theophylline); generic; (Rx)
    Aminophylline suppositories 250mg (197.5 mg theophylline) & 500 mg (395 mg theophylline);(Rx)
    Theophylline Time Released Capsules and Tablets; 50 mg, 60 mg, 65 mg, 75 mg, 100 mg, 125mg, 130 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg, 260 mg, & 300 mg, 450 mg, 500 mg, 600 mg are available(Note: Different products have different claimed release rates which may or may notcorrespond to actual times in veterinary patients; (Rx)
    Theophylline Tablets and Capsules: 100 mg, 125 mg, 200 mg, 250 mg, 300 mg (Rx)
    Theophylline Syrup; 80 mg/15 ml (26.7 mg/5 ml), 150 mg/15 ml (50 mg/5 ml) (Rx)
    Theophylline Elixir/Solution 80 mg/15 ml (26.7 mg/5 ml) (Rx)
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