Pharmacotherapeutic group: Cardiac stimulant, excl. cardiac glycosides, phosphodiesterase inhibitor. ATCvet code: QC01CE90.
Pimobendan, a benzimidazole-pyridazinone derivative, is a non-sympathomimetic, non-glycoside inotropic substance with potent vasodilatative properties.
Pimobendan exerts its stimulatory myocardial effect by a dual mechanism of action: increase in calcium sensitivity of cardiac myofilaments and inhibition of phosphodiesterase (type III). It also exhibits a vasodilating action through an inhibitory action on phosphodiesterase III activity. Thus the positive inotropism is triggered neither by an action similar to that of the cardiac glycosides nor sympathomimetically.
When used in cases of symptomatic valvular insufficiency in conjunction with furosemide the product has been shown to improve the quality of life and extend life expectancy in treated dogs.
When used in a limited number of cases of symptomatic dilated cardiomyopathy in conjunction with furosemide, enalapril and digoxin, the product has been shown to improve the quality of life and to extend life expectancy in treated dogs.
Following oral administration of pimobendan, the absolute biovailability of the active principle is 60 - 63%. Since this bioavailability is considerably reduced when pimobendan is administered with food or shortly thereafter, it is recommended to treat animals approximately 1 hour before feeding.
After oral administration of 0.25 mg/kg b.w of pimobendan, the maximal plasma concentration was 17.4 µg/L (mean Cmax) and AUC was 20.9 h*µg/L (mean AUC0-t).
The volume of distribution is 2.6 l/kg, indicating that pimobendan is distributed readily into the tissues. The mean plasma protein binding is 93%.
The compound is oxidatively demethylated to its major active metabolite (UD-CG 212). Further metabolic pathways are phase II conjugates of UD-CG 212, in essence glucuronides and sulfates.
The plasma elimination half-life of pimobendan is 0.4 hours, consistent with the high clearance of 90 ml/min/kg and a short mean residence time of 0.5 hours.
The main active metabolite is eliminated with a plasma elimination half-life of 2.0 hours. Almost the entire dose is eliminated via faeces.