Pharmacokinetic evaluation of tramadol and its major metabolites after single oral sustained tablet administration in the dog: a pilot study

Vet J. 2009 May;180(2):253-5. doi: 10.1016/j.tvjl.2007.12.011. Epub 2008 Mar 3.


The study evaluated the pharmacokinetics of tramadol and its major metabolites O-desmethyltramadol (M1), N-desmethyltramadol (M2) and N-O didesmethyltramadol (M5) following a single oral administration of a sustained release (SR) 100mg tablet to dogs. Plasma tramadol concentration was greater than the limit of quantification (LOQ) in three dogs, M1 was quantified only in one dog while M2 and M5 were quantified in all of the dogs. The median values of C(max) (maximum plasma concentration), T(max) (time to maximum plasma concentration) and T(1/2) (half-life) for tramadol were 0.04 (0.17-0.02)mirog mL(-1), 3 (4-2) and 1.88 (2.211-1.435)h, respectively. M5 showed median values of C(max), T(max) and T(1/2) of 0.1 (0.19-0.09)microg mL(-1), 2 (3-1) and 4.230 (6.583-1.847)h, respectively. M2 showed median values of C(max), T(max) and T(1/2) of 0.22 (0.330-0.080)microg mL(-1), 4 (7-3) and 4.487 (6.395-1.563)h, respectively. The findings suggest that the SR formulation of tramadol may not have suitable pharmacokinetic characteristics to be administered once-a-day as an effective and safe treatment for pain in the dog.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Delayed-Action Preparations
  • Dogs / blood
  • Dogs / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Pilot Projects
  • Tramadol / administration & dosage
  • Tramadol / analogs & derivatives
  • Tramadol / blood
  • Tramadol / pharmacokinetics*


  • Delayed-Action Preparations
  • O-demethyltramadol
  • Tramadol
  • N-demethyltramadol