New USEF Drug Rule Goes into Effect April 1

An important rule change affecting the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in U.S. Equestrian Federation (USEF) competition horses goes into effect April 1.

The USEF Board of Directors voted to amend its Therapeutic Drug Rule and restrict use to a single NSAID beginning December 1, 2011.

While the presence of two of the seven approved and quantitatively restricted NSAIDs in a horse will still be allowed prior to December 2011 (with the exception of the forbidden combination of phenylbutazone and flunixin meglumine, trade name "Banamine"), it is important to note that new restrictions are in place concerning their use. Beginning April, 1, 2010, anyone administering two NSAIDs to a horse within five days prior to participating at a USEF-licensed competition will be required to complete and file a NSAID Disclosure Form with the USEF Steward/Technical Delegate or their Designated Competition Office Representative. This form will allow the USEF Equine Drugs and Medications Program to collect valuable data regarding the use of NSAIDs in competition horses.

USEF has developed an education plan to guide management, owners, trainers, and exhibitors through the implementation of this rule change, including an informational pamphlet and NSAID Disclosure Form. Both the pamphlet and the forms will be shipped to all competition managers for distribution from their competition offices.

It is the responsibility of the competitor and their veterinarian to make certain the use of two NSAIDs within five days of competing is reported on the NSAID Disclosure Form and is properly filed with the USEF steward/technical delegate or their designated competition office representative. It is important to note that a standard USEF Medication Report Form may not be used in this particular instance.

Additional information and veterinary literature regarding NSAID use and the change to the USEF rule.

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