In dogs with metaldehyde intoxication, are benzodiazepines more effective than methocarbamol in relaxing muscles and reducing tremors?

  • T Liatis Small Animal Hospital, University of Glasgow, 464 Bearsden Rd, Bearsden, Glasgow G61 1BD



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PICO question

In dogs with metaldehyde intoxication, are benzodiazepines (e.g. diazepam, midazolam) more effective than methocarbamol in relaxing muscles and reducing tremors?


Clinical bottom line

Category of research question


The number and type of study designs reviewed

Five papers were critically reviewed. There were five retrospective case series

Strength of evidence


Outcomes reported

Currently, five retrospective case series exist in the literature which discuss metaldehyde intoxication cases treated mainly with benzodiazepines, a few of which had methocarbamol. There is not really any study to compare directly benzodiazepines with methocarbamol. In addition to that, factors such as commercial (e.g. the low availability of methocarbamol in the UK market compared to the US market), administrational (e.g. multiple administration routes of benzodiazepines) and pharmacological (e.g. lack of anticonvulsant function of methocarbamol), have played an important role in the treatment choice. Several case reports exist as well


Currently, there is insufficient evidence to determine whether benzodiazepines are more effective than methocarbamol in relaxing muscles and reducing occurrence of muscle tremors


How to apply this evidence in practice

The application of evidence into practice should take into account multiple factors, not limited to: individual clinical expertise, patient’s circumstances and owners’ values, country, location or clinic where you work, the individual case in front of you, the availability of therapies and resources.

Knowledge Summaries are a resource to help reinforce or inform decision-making. They do not override the responsibility or judgement of the practitioner to do what is best for the animal in their care.


Open Access Peer Reviewed


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Charalambous, M., Bhatti, S.F.M., Van Ham, L., Platt, S., Jeffery, N.D., Tipold, A., Siedenburgh, J., Volk, H.A., Hasegawa, D., Gallucci, A., Gandini, G., Musteata, M., Ives, E. & Vanhaesebrouck, A.E. (2017). Intranasal Midazolam versus Rectal Diazepam for the Management of Canine Status Epilepticus: A Multicenter Randomized Parallel‐Group Clinical Trial. Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 31(4): 1149–1158. DOI:

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Vol. 5 No. 2 (2020): The second issue of 2020

Section: Knowledge Summaries

Categories :  Small Animal  /  Dogs  /  Cats  /  Rabbits  /  Production Animal  /  Cattle  /  Sheep  /  Pig  /  Equine  /  Exotics  /