Pharmacokinetic and urine profile of tramadol and its major metabolites following oral immediate release capsules administration in dogs

Vet Res Commun. 2009 Dec;33(8):875-85. doi: 10.1007/s11259-009-9236-1.


The aim of the present paper was to test the oral administration of oral immediate release capsules of tramadol in dogs, to asses both its pharmacokinetic properties and its urine profile. After capsules administration of tramadol (4 mg/kg), involving eight male Beagle dogs, the concentration of tramadol and its main metabolites, M1, M2 and M5, were determined in plasma and urine using an HPLC method. The plasma concentrations of tramadol and metabolites were fitted on the basis of mono- and non-compartmental models, respectively. Tramadol was detected in plasma from 5 min up to 10 h in lesser amounts than M5 and M2, detected at similar concentrations, while M1 was detected in negligible amounts. In the urine, M5 and M1 showed the highest and smallest amount, respectively; M1 and M5 resulted widely conjugate with glucuronic acid. In conclusion, after oral administration of tramadol immediate release capsules, the absorption of the active ingredient was rapid, but its rapid metabolism quickly transformed the parental drug to high levels of M5 and M2, showing an extensive elimination via the kidney. Hence, in the dog, the oral immediate release pharmaceutical formulation of tramadol would have different pharmacokinetic behaviour than in humans.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Analgesics, Opioid / administration & dosage
  • Analgesics, Opioid / metabolism
  • Analgesics, Opioid / pharmacokinetics*
  • Analgesics, Opioid / urine
  • Animals
  • Dogs
  • Male
  • Tramadol / administration & dosage
  • Tramadol / metabolism
  • Tramadol / pharmacokinetics*
  • Tramadol / urine


  • Analgesics, Opioid
  • Tramadol