Racing.com's Senior Racing Journalist Shane Anderson looks at how well the use of Lasix - or Furosemide - is understood by the racing industry. When you hear the name the immediate response is to think of US racing, for it has long been the drug of choice that differentiates the American’s attitude to medication from other racing jurisdictions around the world. It is the common name for Furosemide, the anti-bleeding medication that burst into prominence in the 1970s. Yet, its use in Australian racing, is not widely known – or at least acknowledged. With the recent disqualification of Junoob from his victory in the Group 1 The Metropolitan at Randwick in October, and subsequent $30,000 fine to Sydney’s premier trainer Chris Waller for presenting the horse to race with a prohibited substance in his system, it has become apparent that Furosemide is being used in varying degrees throughout the Australian thoroughbred racing industry. If the use of Furosemide is banned on race day, then should it be allowed as a medication treatment at all? Bleeding in the lungs, which is now commonly referred to as Exercise Induced Pulmonary Haemorrhaging (EIPH), has long been an issue that has affected the racing industry. Horses, when placed under pressure during strenuous exercise, may bleed due to raised blood pressure in the lungs. This bleeding may then become present in the nostrils. The blood pressure leading from the artery on the right side of the heart to the lungs has a four-fold increase in horses during exercise or competition, a trait that would not exist in humans as an example. This pulmonary pressure increase means that the capillaries in horses’ lungs are prone to rupture. Furosimide is the most commonly used diuretic in the horse. It increases urine production and decreases the amount of fluid within tissues and organs of the horse's body. It also acts upon the kidneys, causing increased excretion of electrolytes and water. Furosemide is used to treat pulmonary edema, some allergic reactions, and congestive heart failure. Some veterinarians prescribe furosemide for racehorses because it is thought to prevent or diminish the severity of exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage or bleeding from the lungs. Side effects include dehydration and loss of electrolytes. In some species, furosemide may negatively impact hearing and balance. Furosemide should not be given to animals with kidney failure, animals in a state of dehydration, or those likely to become dehydrated. Rexulti vs abilify Cytotec for pregnancy Furosemide should be used with great caution, if at all, in cases where renal kidney function may be impaired; with preexisting dehydration and known, or suspected electrolyte imbalance; and, in horses with liver disease or suspected tumors of the pituitary gland. Bleeds, or exercise induced pulmonary hemorrhages EIPH, affect the majority of horses during intense exercise, and Lasix is often used to reduce or prevent. Lasix also known as furosemide is a potent loop diuretic that increases urine production and urinary frequency. Lasix has been administered to horses before races for the past 40 years as a way to reduce or prevent bleeds. Exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH) plagues many racehorses, with up to 75% of Thoroughbreds affected by this condition. Despite the relatively widespread use of furosemide (Lasix or Salix), this medication does not actually treat or cure EIPH. Instead, furosemide administration reduces EIPH “scores,” which means affected horses bleed less during exercise when they receive furosemide. “EIPH occurs during strenuous exercise due to increased pressure in the small blood vessels in the walls of the horse’s lungs. S., a veterinarian for Kentucky Equine Research (KER). As a result, blood abnormally enters the lungs, which as one might imagine, decreases a horse’s ability to perform in competition,” explained Laura Petroski, B. According to a recent study*, timing of furosemide administration greatly impacts efficacy of furosemide and therefore athletic performance. “Race-day medication rules vary between racing jurisdictions. North America typically allows administration of furosemide on race day, usually up to 4 hours prior to post time. One of the questions that we are frequently asked is, “What is the effect of Lasix on blood viscosity? Bleeds, or exercise induced pulmonary hemorrhages (EIPH), affect the majority of horses during intense exercise, and Lasix is often used to reduce or prevent bleeds. Lasix (or furosemide) is a potent loop diuretic that increases urine production and urinary frequency. Lasix has been administered to horses before races for the past 40 years as a way to reduce or prevent bleeds . Because Lasix reduces plasma volume, it is believed by many experts to reduce blood pressure in the lungs and prevent bleeds from occurring. Lasix has been shown to reduce plasma volume by 11-13%, and the effect lasts for up to 3-4 hours . Despite the reduced blood pressure and plasma volume in furosemide treated horses, veterinary researchers at the University of Pennsylvania stated, “Using a visual endoscopic scoring system, numerous studies conducted after racing have shown either a slight or no reduction in EIPH in horses administered furosemide before racing” . An authoritative review by equine veterinary scientists Lawrence Soma and Cornelius Uboh published in the Journal of Veterinary Pharmacology and Therapeutics stated that the reduction in blood pressure in the lungs caused by Lasix is not sufficient in magnitude to prevent bleeds . Lasix equine Furosemide EquiMed - Horse Health Matters, Equine Health Labs - Lasix and Blood Viscosity Where can you buy tretinoin gel Furosemide is used in general equine practice to manage fluid retention and edema. It is commonly used in racehorses to reduce the incidence of exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage EIPH and epistaxis. Furosemide for Veterinary Use - Wedgewood Pharmacy. Effects of Lasix Use in Race Horses - Pros and Cons EquiMed - Horse.. The great Lasix debate - How well is it understood?. Horses that were treated with Lasix lost an average of 27.9 pounds between injection and a weight measurement after the race, while untreated horses lost an average of 11.9 pounds. An authoritative review by equine veterinary scientists Lawrence Soma and Cornelius Uboh published in the Journal of Veterinary Pharmacology and Therapeutics stated that the reduction in blood pressure in the lungs caused by Lasix is not sufficient in magnitude to prevent bleeds. As the debate about race-day medication rages on, hay/oats/water advocates have pushed to eliminate furosemide from the American raceday.