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Patient Info
Fluid Rate
Sec/Drop
Drops/Sec
  • Morphine-Lidocaine-Ketamine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume
    Morphine Loading Dose 0.1 - 0.5 mg/kg IV IM
    Dose above maximum
    Morphine CRI Dose 0.12 to 0.36 mg/kg/hr (2 to 6 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Lidocaine 20mg/ml 0.6 to 3.0 mg/kg/hr (10 to 50 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Ketamine 100mg/ml 0.12 to 1.2 mg/kg/hr (2 to 20 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Fluids to remove
  • Hydromorphone-Lidocaine-Ketamine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume
    Hydromorphone Loading Dose 0.05 - 0.1 mg/kg IV IM
    Hydromorphone CRI Dose 0.01-0.05 mg/kg/hr (0.67-3.35 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Lidocaine 20mg/ml 0.6 to 3.0 mg/kg/hr (10 to 50 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Ketamine 100mg/ml 0.12 to 1.2 mg/kg/hr (2 to 20 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Fluids to remove
  • Methadone-Lidocaine-Ketamine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Methadone Loading Dose
    10 mg/ml
    0.1 - 0.2 mg/kg IV IM
    Methadone 0.12-0.36 mg/kg/hr (2-6 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Lidocaine 20mg/ml 0.6 to 3.0 mg/kg/hr (10 to 50 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Ketamine 100mg/ml 0.12 to 1.2 mg/kg/hr (2 to 20 µg/kg/min)
    Dose above maximum
    Fluids to remove
  • Buprenorphine-Lidocaine-Ketamine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume
    Buprenorphine Loading Dose 0.1 - 0.5 mg/kg IV IM
    Buprenorphine 0.00245 to 0.0075 mg/kg/hr (0.042 to 0.125 µg/kg/min)
    Lidocaine 20mg/ml 0.6 to 3.0 mg/kg/hr (10 to 50 µg/kg/min)
    Ketamine 100mg/ml 0.12 to 1.2 mg/kg/hr (2 to 20 µg/kg/min)
    Fluids to remove
  • Fentanyl-Lidocaine-Ketamine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume
    Fentanyl Loading Dose0.05 mg/ml 0.001 - 0.003 mg/kg IV IM
    Fentanyl
    Use Dose for:
    0.002-0.005 mg/kg/h (0.03-0.08 µg/kg/min)
    Lidocaine 20mg/ml 0.6 to 3.0 mg/kg/hr (10 to 50 µg/kg/min)
    Ketamine 100mg/ml 0.12 to 1.2 mg/kg/hr (2 to 20 µg/kg/min)
    Fluids to remove
  • Butorphanol-Lidocaine-Ketamine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume
    Butorphanol Loading Dose 0.1 - 0.5 mg/kg IV IM
    Butorphanol CRI 0.1-0.2 mg/kg/hr (1.67-3.34 µg/kg/min)
    Lidocaine 20mg/ml 0.6 to 3.0 mg/kg/hr (10 to 50 µg/kg/min)
    Ketamine 100mg/ml 0.12 to 1.2 mg/kg/hr (2 to 20 µg/kg/min)
    Fluids to remove
  • Dexmedetomidine-Lidocaine-Ketamine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Dexmedetomidine Loading Dose 0.001 - 0.005 mg/kg IV IM
    Dexmedetomidine 0.5 mg/ml 0.0005-0.002 mg/kg/hr (0.008-0.03 µg/kg/min)
    Lidocaine 20mg/ml 0.6 to 3.0 mg/kg/hr (10 to 50 µg/kg/min)
    Ketamine 100mg/ml 0.12 to 1.2 mg/kg/hr (2 to 20 µg/kg/min)
    Fluids to remove
  • Lidocaine and Ketamine Loading Doses
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume
    Lidocaine Loading Dose
    20mg/ml
    0.5 - 1 mg/kg IV
    Ketamine Loading Dose
    100 mg/ml
    0.25 - 0.5 mg/kg IV
  • Morphine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Morphine Loading Dose 0.1 - 0.5 mg/kg IV IM
    Dose above maximum
    Morphine CRI 0.12 to 0.36 mg/kg/hr (2 to 6 µg/kg/min)
  • Hydromorphone
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Hydromorphone Loading Dose 0.05 - 0.1 mg/kg IV IM
    Hydromorphone CRI 0.01-0.05 mg/kg/hr (0.67-3.35 µg/kg/min)
  • Methadone
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Methadone Loading Dose
    10 mg/ml
    0.1 - 0.2 mg/kg IV IM
    Methadone CRI 10mg/ml 0.12-0.36 mg/kg/hr (2-6 µg/kg/min)
  • Buprenorphine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Buprenorphine Loading Dose 0.01 - 0.02 mg/kg IV IM SQ
    Buprenorphine CRI 0.00245 to 0.0075 mg/kg/hr (0.042 to 0.125 µg/kg/min)
  • Fentanyl
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Fentanyl Loading Dose
    0.05 mg/ml
    0.001 - 0.003 mg/kg IV IM
    Fentanyl CRI 0.05 mg/ml
    Use Dose for:
    0.002-0.005 mg/kg/h (0.03-0.08 µg/kg/min)
  • Butorphanol
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Butorphanol Loading Dose 0.1 - 0.5 mg/kg IV IM
    Butorphanol CRI 0.1-0.2 mg/kg/hr (1.67-3.34 µg/kg/min)
  • Dexmedetomidine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Dexmedetomidine Loading Dose 0.5 mg/ml 0.001 – 0.005 mg/kg IV IM
    Dexmedetomidine CRI 0.5 mg/ml 0.0005-0.002 mg/kg/hr (0.008-0.03 µg/kg/min)
  • Lidocaine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Lidocaine Loading Dose
    20mg/ml
    0.5 - 1 mg/kg IV
    Lidocaine CRI 20mg/ml 0.6 to 3.0 mg/kg/hr (10 to 50 µg/kg/min)
  • Ketamine
    Drug Dose Range Drug Dose (mg/kg) Volume (ml)
    Ketamine Loading Dose
    100 mg/ml
    0.25 - 0.5 mg/kg IV
    Ketamine CRI 100mg/ml 0.12 to 1.2 mg/kg/hr (2 to 20 µg/kg/min)
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  • Automatically Calculates CRI's as you type

References

Dosage ranges for infusions may vary slightly between sources

  • Egger CM, Love L: Pain Management in Veterinary Practice. Wiley-Blackwell, 2013.
  • Gaynor S, Muir WW: Handbook of Veterinary Pain Management, 3rd ed. Mosby, 2014.
  • Goldberg ME, Shaffran N: Pain Management for Veterinary Technicians and Nurses. Wiley-Blackwell 2014.
  • Steagall P, Robertson SA: Feline Anesthesia and Pain Management. Wiley-Blackwell, 2017.

About CRI's

A constant rate infusion/manually controlled infusion (CRI/MCI) of analgesic drugs is a simple and effective means of improving patient comfort. Various formulations can be used as a constant rate infusion; the protocol chosen depends on the patient and the degree of pain experienced or anticipated. Some of the commonly used drugs include the following:


KETAMINE -- NMDA (N-methyl-D-aspartate) receptors are present in the dorsal horn of the spinal cord and certain areas within the brain. Intense and/or chronic noxious input to the dorsal horn cells (mediated principally by C-fibers) results in the removal of magnesium from the NMDA receptors and their activation by glutamate. This causes prolonged depolarization of spinal neurons (an increase in the magnitude and duration of neuron firing), which leads to an “amplification” of the pain response. This is a significant part of the process of central sensitization (an increase in the excitability of spinal neurons) and may result in hyperalgesia (an excessive response to a painful stimulus) and allodynia (a painful response to a normally non-painful stimulus). It is readily apparent that blocking (antagonizing) the NMDA receptors will help to minimize excessively painful responses. Additionally, studies suggest that antagonizing these receptors improves opioid receptor sensitivity, reduces opioid tolerance and minimizes the development of rebound hyperalgesia (the phenomenon of markedly increased pain when opioids are withdrawn). Ketamine is the most commonly used antagonist of NMDA receptors in veterinary medicine. While its effects as a dissociative anesthetic at standard doses are well known, a new realm of activity occurs when it is delivered at sub-anesthetic doses. At constant rate infusion doses, ketamine blocks receptor activity without causing any dissociative or other adverse effects. It should be noted that a microdose ketamine CRI should not be used as a sole means of analgesia. It is intended to augment other pain relievers, and should always be used in conjunction with opioids or other analgesics.

Opioids -- When combined with ketamine in a constant rate infusion, significant analgesia is achieved. The steady-state levels of opioids help to avoid some of the “peak and valley” effects seen with prn administration of opioids. Additionally, its use intraoperatively (as a “piggyback” onto anesthetic maintenance fluids) serves to reduce the amount of anesthetic gas required, which can be useful in decreasing the risk of hypotension.


LIDOCAINE -- The addition of lidocaine has several benefits. For intractable/very severe pain, it adds to the analgesia and sedation. Lidocaine is reported to have some cytoprotective effects, such as weak calcium channel inhibition (which may be helpful in preventing reperfusion injury), and reduced neutrophil chemotaxis and platelet aggregation (which could help significantly in cases with the potential for DIC or SIRS, including GDV’s and splenectomies). Also, lidocaine has some activity in preventing ileus (potentially useful for abdominal procedures). Various dosage rates of lidocaine have been advocated. Rates as low as 10 µg/kg/minute (0.6 mg/kg/hour) may provide analgesia, though it may take up to 50 µg/kg/minute (3 mg/kg/hour) for the full cytoprotective and anti-ileus effects. For feline patients, high dose rate CRIs should be limited to 2 hours duration after which dose rates should be reduced to between 10 to 25 µg/kg/min (0.6 to 1.5 mg/kg/hour) for up to an additional 4 hours duration.


CRIs can be delivered through the IV fluid bag route or directly through a syringe pump. The IV fluid bag route is attractive because it allows for precise delivery rates using equipment already available at most practices. The simplest method involves a single fluid bag providing both the drug delivery as well as the patient’s fluid needs. The downside to this method is the inability to adjust the fluid rate without changing the drug delivery rate. To maximize the flexibility of this method you generally need to pick a midrange dose rate so that adjustments in patient fluid need don’t take you outside of the preferred drug dose rates.

You can expand your flexibility by running two separate fluid lines through two different IV fluid pumps. In the two-pump model, the CRI drugs would be delivered at a very low rate (ex. 1 ml/kg/hr) while the patient’s additional fluid needs are separately managed through the second line. This allows for total flexibility of drug and fluid delivery but requires two pumps and double IV access.
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