Recently there have been some stories on the internet about the canine flea and heartworm preventative called Trifexis, which is manufactured by Elanco. A small group of people are convinced that Trifexis was the cause of their dogs death. We have been prescribing Trifexis with confidence for over two years. The only side effect Belle Isle Animal Hospital has encountered was gastrointestinal upset i.e. vomiting and/or diarrhea and this is in a very small percentage of dogs.
Dr. Carrie Unger spoke to Elanco about the 4 cases that were to be presented on the news and here is a summary:
3 cases were purebred puppies that were seen by 3 different vets and owned by 3 different families. They all developed respiratory disease at various times after Trifexis administration but all 3 were found to have viral myocarditis (inflammation/infection of the heart) and were suspected to have genetic issues leading to the heart condition after having autopsies performed at both UF and UGA vet schools. Again, it was viral and was not shown to be linked to any toxicity of medication.
The fourth case was an older dog that developed signs of vestibular disease (vertigo) 7-10 days after Trifexis administration that progressed to seizures. The owner declined an autopsy but on radiographs a mass was found on the pancreas and in the lungs. The veterinarian suspected a pancreatic tumor ( insulinoma ) that led to low blood glucose resulting in the vertigo and seizure activity. The dog had an episode of wobbling that was not medically treated several times prior to giving Trifexis.
We know that the loss of a pet is a very sad time and we wish these families our condolences. Unfortunately though, not all of this information will be presented to the public by the media. Always trust your veterinarian.
Regardless of the content of the story, we want you to have confidence of the following:
- - Trifexis is safe when used according to label, and it’s been used successfully for over two years.
- - More than 50 million doses have been dispensed since launch.
- -We want anyone who suspects an adverse reaction with Trifexis to call 888-545-5973
- -We report all adverse events to the FDA, and investigate appropriately