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Russia lifts ban on opioid analgesic etorphine for treatment of animals

Etorphine has been excluded from the list of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors, whose marketing was prohibited in Russia, according to the government regulation No. 31.

Currently, etorphine is included in the list of drugs whose circulation is restricted and controlled by the government.

Etorphine is an opioid analgesic which has been widely used in the world for treatment of animals, especially in zoos and circuses. One of its main advantages is its speed of operation. It allows animals to be quickly put into medicated sleep in order to examine and treat them.Etorphine also has found a place for use in the capture of large mammals.

Sergei Sereda, the President of the Association of Veterinary Practitioners, told:

Etorphine was banned in Russia. However, since the ban on etorphine has recently been lifted we can use it for humane treatment of animals, because animals should not feel the pain.

Sergei Sereda noted that earlier this drug was used by veterinarians illegally to alleviate pain and suffering in animals. The criminal investigations were launched for an unauthorized use of the drug.

According to the President of the Association, permission to use the drug is a welcome step in the right direction.

Sergei Sereda  concluded:

However, there should be other medicines available for veterinarians, perhaps, tens or hundreds of brand names, so that the veterinarians will have a product choice depending on the situation. But the fact that at least the use of etorphine has been permitted, as a veterinarian, makes me feel happy.


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