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Thiotal 1 g (Canada)

This page contains information on Thiotal 1 g for veterinary use.
The information provided typically includes the following:
  • Thiotal 1 g Indications
  • Warnings and cautions for Thiotal 1 g
  • Direction and dosage information for Thiotal 1 g

Thiotal 1 g

This treatment applies to the following species:
Manufacturer: Vétoquinol


Thiopental sodium for injection, USP

DIN 02243344




Thiopental Sodium

1 g

Contains Sodium Carbonate as buffer. Contains no preservative.


THIOTAL 1 g (thiopental sodium for injection, USP) is an ultra short thiobarbiturate anaesthetic for intravenous use. Anaesthesia with THIOTAL 1 g has a prompt induction, short duration, the recovery period is short, and the side effects are minimal.

Thiotal 1 g Indications

THIOTAL 1 g (thiopental sodium for injection, USP) is recommended especially for minor surgery, reduction of fractures, physical examination, radiography and dentistry. Animals can be completely anaesthetized with a single intravenous dose. Since the period of ataxia is short, the patient is able to leave the hospital or office without a prolonged delay. This type of anaesthesia is also useful in prolonged operations once the veterinarian develops the necessary technique for the several species, using intermittent or continuous injection.

It is also valuable induction anaesthetic in preparation for a volatile anaesthetic which may be required for prolonged operations, particularly in large animals.

Route Of Administration

THIOTAL 1 g (thiopental sodium for injection, USP) is intended for intravenous administration only.


THIOTAL 1 g (thiopental sodium for injection, USP) has little effect upon blood pressure but may depress and slow respiration. In the rare cases of laryngeal spasm, an open air passage must be maintained. Overdosing may cause respiratory failure. In this event, artificial respiration and other respiratory stimulants should be used.

In the presence of shock, anemia, cardiac, liver or kidney damage, thiopental sodium must be administered with great care. Preanaesthetic agents, analgesics, some tranquilizers, corticosteroids, and sulfonamides may potentiate the drug and thus reduce the amount necessary to induce a given depth of anaesthesia.

Since the placenta is not a protective barrier against thiopental sodium or any barbiturate, the full anaesthetic dose should not be used in pregnant animals. Light doses of this drug may be used as an induction agent in such cases. To reduce the chance of vomiting and excessive salivation, food should be withheld for 12 hours, when possible, prior to administration.

As with all general anaesthetics, occasional hypersensitive animals will respond atypically to this drug.

SOLUTIONS OF THIOTAL ARE VERY ALKALINE. Avoid perivascular and intraarterial administration.

Use with caution in very young, older and debilitated animals.



Range; 13.0 to 26.0 mg per kg of body weight.

For anaesthesia of short duration (8-10 minutes) which may be sufficient for X-ray, physical examination and minor surgery, 13.0 to 16.5 mg/kg.

For anaesthesia of intermediate duration (10-15 minutes) such as might be used for dentistry or reduction of fractures, 16.5 to 22.0 mg/kg.

For major surgery requiring anaesthesia of longer duration (longer than 15 minutes) induce anaesthesia with 22 to 26 mg/kg of body weight; about half of the dose is given rapidly and the balance more slowly, administered over approximately 15 seconds. Depth of anaesthesia may be determined by the loss of pedal and eye reflexes. The first stage of anaesthesia following the administration of thiopental sodium is commonly evidenced by a deep yawn followed very shortly by loss of reflexes. Although the initial dose may be sufficient for an entire operation, the surgeon should be prepared to administer additional drug as needed. Some clinicians prefer to leave the needle in the vein. Any additional drug should be administered a little more slowly. As much as a third or more of the original dose may be required to produce the desired depth of anaesthesia. Injections should not be at closer than 30 to 60 second intervals.

With preanaesthetic agents: Preanaesthetic agents (such as morphine or a tranquilizer) decrease the dosage requirements of thiopental sodium, provide for smoother induction and recovery, and may prolong the recovery period. Following morphine as a preanaesthetic agent, the dose of this drug may be reduced as much as 40 to 50 percent, following a tranquilizer, 10 to 25 percent.

The urinary bladder should be emptied immediately after anaesthesia is induced, particularly when prolonged anaesthesia is anticipated.


THIOTAL 1 g (thiopental sodium for injection, USP) use and limitations for cats is similar to that detailed for dogs. The usual dose range is 17.5 to 26.0 mg/kg intravenously.


For best results, the intravenous administration of a phenothiazine tranquilizer is recommended 10 to 20 minutes prior to the administration of thiopental sodium. Rapid injection of thiopental sodium is then recommended and the doses given are for this type of administration. Slower or repeated administration should be avoided. In the rare event that the animal fails to respond to the drug, the procedure should not be repeated in less than 24 hours.

With preanaesthetic tranquilization, 6 to 13 mg thiopental sodium per kg of body weight. An average of 8.25 mg per kg of body weight is recommended. No or minimal restraint is necessary for the recovery period.

Without preanaesthetic tranquilization, 9 to 15.5 mg per kg of body weight. For an average horse (400 to 500 kg) the recommended dose is 10 to 11 mg/kg. The largest dose level is recommended for smaller animals such as ponies. The smallest dose level is recommended for the larger draft horses and older debilitated animals. Restraint is strongly recommended to reduce or eliminate struggling during recovery.

THIOTAL is an effective and quick acting short term general anaesthetic for equines. However, it is desirable either to apply restraint before the recovery period or to use a tranquilizer or sedative with this anaesthetic agent to allow smooth recovery.

Ten to twenty minutes after the intravenous administration of a tranquilizer, the rapid intravenous injection of thiopental sodium will induce anaesthesia easily and rapidly. Surgical anaesthesia ranges from 3 to 14 minutes, righting time from 15 to 120 minutes, and “restraint was not required and recovery was rapid and occurred without emergence excitement or struggling”.

Animals should not be stimulated to rise.

THIOTAL is particularly recommended for general anaesthesia of short duration such as may be required for castration, point firing, dentistry, and minor surgery.

THIOTAL 1 g (thiopental sodium for injection, USP) is the induction anaesthetic of choice in preparation for a volatile anaesthetic in prolonged operations required for major surgery.


In addition to individual variation in response to the anaesthetic, which cannot be always anticipated, there is a consistent difference in the response of nursing calves and of older animals, as pointed out below.

A. Animals 136 Kg Or Over

The recommended dose is 8.2 to 15.4 mg per kg of body weight, depending on the depth of anaesthesia required, administered rapidly. Rapid administration is defined as injecting the entire specified dose with a hypodermic syringe in a one motion thrust.

To deliver 11 mg/kg of body weight, using a 2.5% solution would require 20 mL for each 45.45 kg of body weight.

Should additional drug be required (as in lighter weight animals) it should be injected more slowly, particularly in the obese animal, and the total amount should not exceed 22 mg per kg of body weight.

When a phenothiazine tranquilizer is administered intravenously 10 to 15 minutes prior to the injection of thiopental sodium, the lower dose of this drug (8.2 to 10 mg/kg) should be used. The anaesthesia following the tranquilizer is more profound and the righting time is prolonged slightly.

B. Unweaned Calves

For unweaned calves, from which food has been withheld 6 to 12 hours prior to anaesthesia, no more than 6.6. mg of THIOTAL 1 g (thiopental sodium for injection, USP) per kg is required for deep surgical anaesthesia.

If a phenothiazine tranquilizer is administered to such calves 10 to 20 minutes prior to anaesthesia, the dose of thiopental sodium is reduced to 4.4 mg per kg of body weight.

The drug is an effective, quick-acting, short-term general anaesthetic for the bovine. It is not necessary to provide restraint for the recovery period for the bovine. There is, however, a marked tendency for the bovine to regurgitate with resulting inhalation pneumonia and suffocation. Accordingly, the surgeon should be prepared to keep the trachea open. Lowering the head and endotracheal intubation are suggested means to help avoid mechanical suffocation. The response to this rapid intravenous drug is almost immediate. Within a few seconds the standing animal will fall and is ready for surgery. Surgical anaesthesia usually lasts for 5 to 10 minutes. During this period, respiration will appear shallow. There may be a slight reflex response to corneal and anal stimulation but no resistance to passive movement of the limbs. Righting time is usually 2 to 3 hours and uneventful.

This drug is particularly useful for operations of short duration such as laparotomies in calves, dehorning, hernial repair, other minor surgery, and induction anaesthesia preceding the use of a volatile anaesthetics.

When recovery is sufficiently apparent, it is helpful to roll the bovine up to the rest on its sternum so that rumination and chewing of the cud may be resumed.


This preparation has been used successfully for experimental surgery in lambs weighing about 16 kg each, at the rate of 10 to 14.9 mg/kg depending on the depth of anaesthesia desired.

Induction was rapid and without excitement, recovery was smooth and uneventful. About half of the maximum dose was injected rapidly in the jugular vein and thereafter continued more slowly - over a 30 to 60 second period - until the desired depth of anaesthesia was achieved. For deep surgical anaesthesia, administration was continued until apnea was evident for about 15 seconds (the practicing veterinary surgeon probably would not want to push anaesthesia to this depth). Apnea was followed by shallow but regular respiration, the absence of corneal reflex, and complete muscle relaxation. Increased salivation and ruminal regurgitation in sheep, as in cattle, is a problem with general anaesthesia and must be handled as in cattle.


This preparation has been found to be a superior anaesthetic for swine because of the ease of administration, rapid induction, and short smooth recovery period. As in other species, there is an inverse ration between the dose level and the weight of the animal. The minimum anaesthetic dose for healthy animals is shown in the following table:

kg of body weight


4.5 - 23


23 - 45


45 - 90


90 - 136


136 - 181


181 - 272


Slightly over the dose, calculated from the above table, should be drawn into the syringe because an occasional animal may require slightly more. One half of the calculated dose is injected rapidly and the remainder more slowly until the desired anaesthesia is obtained; caution should be used with unthrifty animals which may not require, and thus should not receive, the full calculated dose. Only a rare robust animal will require slightly more than the minimum calculated dose. Respiration should be watched, an occasional animal may require artificial respiration.

For large animals thiopental sodium is best administered through a small gauge needle into the ear vein while the animal is restrained with a regular swine holder or with a rope in the mouth.

Piglets and small swine may be placed conveniently in a trough in a supine position and injection made directly into the anterior vena cava.

This drug is a particularly useful anaesthetic agent for such operations on swine as hernial repair, tumor « scirrhous cord » removal, tusk removal and similar oral surgery, castration, splenectomies and lancing abscesses.


For a 2.5% solution, dissolve in 40 mL sterile water.

Do not use any other type of diluent than sterile water as it could cause precipitates.

Reconstituted solutions are not stable indefinitely. Use within 24 hours.

Only freshly prepared, clear solutions should be used.


Store between 15°C and 25°C. Keep reconstituted solution in a cool place.

VÉTOQUINOL N.-A. INC., 2000, ch. Georges, Lavaltrie, QC, Canada J5T 3S5





1 g


991050-1, 95737-2

NAC No.: 12341643

Commercial Division

Telephone:   450-586-2252
Order Desk:   800-363-1700
Fax:   450-586-4649
Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the Thiotal 1 g information published above. However, it remains the responsibility of the readers to familiarize themselves with the product information contained on the Canadian product label or package insert.

Copyright © 2018 North American Compendiums. Updated: 2018-05-30