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Pet Medication 101: Cyclosporine

Atopica for dogs and cats

It’s important to understand a medication’s uses and side effects before giving it to your pet. This medication info sheet is meant to give you a good understanding of what Atopica (cyclosporine) is used for, how it works, and potential side effects in cats and dogs. Always consult a veterinarian before giving your pet any medication.

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1. Drug Name:

Cyclosporine

2. Brand Name:

Atopica

3. How Dispensed:

Prescription-only

4. Forms:

Tablets 10mg, Tablets 25mg, Tablets 50mg, Tablets 100mg

5. Drug Type/Class:

Immunosuppressant, calcineurin inhibitor

6. Uses in Dogs and Cats:

Cyclosporin is used to treat inflammation and immune-mediated disease in dogs and cats. More specifically, it is used to treat allergic dermatitis, autoimmune disorders, perianal fistula, inflammatory bowel disease, immune-mediated thrombocytopenia, and autoimmune hemolytic anemia.

7. How it Works:

Cyclosporine binds to cyclophilin and inhibits calcineurin, which inhibits T-cell function.

8. Side Effects and/or Signs of Overdosage:

Cyclosporine is very well tolerated by pets at low doses. However, at high doses, side effects tend to be gastrointestinal (vomiting, diarrhea, and anorexia). Uncommon adverse reactions include otitis (ear infection), gingival hyperplasia, gingivitis, hepatotoxicity, anaphylactic reactions, nephropathy, and tremors.

9. Drug Interactions:

Cyclosporine is not recommended with immunosuppressive medications (like azathioprine), antacids (like famotidine), antifungals (like Griseofulvin and ketoconazole), and certain sulfa-based antibiotics. It should also be avoided with anticonvulsants (like phenobarbital) and certain heart medications (like digoxin)

10. Cautionary Statements:

Cyclosporine should be avoided in patients that have malignant neoplasia (cancer). It should be used with caution in pets with liver or kidney disease.

Read more:

Pet Medication 101: Prednisone / Prednisolone

Pet Medication 101: Dexamethasone

Pet Medication Guide: What Common Medications Can and Can't Dogs Take?

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