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Treatment of a dog with severe baclofen intoxication using hemodialysis and mechanical ventilation


Address correspondence and reprint requests to:
Dr. Danna Torre, Shoreline Veterinary Referral and Emergency Center, 895 Bridgeport Ave. Shelton, CT 06484.


Objective: This case report describes the successful management of a dog with coma and respiratory depression due to severe baclofen intoxication.

Case summary: A Doberman Pinscher mixed breed dog ingested 500  mg (20 mg/kg) of baclofen. Signs of severe intoxication included coma and profound respiratory muscle weakness. The dog was supported with positive pressure ventilation and treated with one session of hemodialysis. Weaning from the ventilator was achieved within 4 hours of hemodialysis, and recovery from coma occurred over the following 12–36 hours. The dog regained full neurologic function and was normal at discharge following 3 days of hospitalization.

New or unique information provide: Severe central nervous system depression and respiratory depression due to baclofen intoxication can be life threatening. In addition to other supportive care, hemodialysis may hasten recovery and ventilatory support may be essential to achieve a positive outcome. With successful treatment, toxicity can be decreased and the associated life-threatening central nervous system and ventilatory depression can resolve. Prognosis for return of normal function is excellent.