Pharmacokinetics of Methimazole in Normal Cats and Cats with Hyperthyroidism

Trepanier L.A., Peterson M.E. and Aucoin D.P.

Res Vet Sci, 1991. 50(1): p.69-74.


The intravenous and oral disposition of the antithyroid drug methimazole was determined in 10 clinically normal cats and nine cats with naturally occurring hyperthyroidism. After intravenous administration of 5 mg methimazole, the mean residence time was significantly (P less than 0.05) shorter in the cats with hyperthyroidism than in the normal cats, but there was no significant difference between the mean values for total body clearance (CL), steady state volume of distribution (Vdss), terminal elimination rate constant (ke), or serum terminal half-life (t1/2) in the two groups of cats. After oral administration, the mean bioavailability of methimazole was high in both the normal cats (77.6 per cent) and cats with hyperthyroidism (79.5 per cent). The values for mean residence time, ke and serum terminal t1/2 after oral dosing were significantly shorter in the cats with hyperthyroidism than in the normal cats. However, after oral administration of methimazole there were no significant differences between the mean values for CL, Vdss, bioavailability and maximum serum concentrations or the time for maximal concentrations to be reached in the two groups of cats. Overall, most pharmacokinetic parameters for methimazole were not altered by the hyperthyroid state. However, the cats with hyperthyroidism did show a trend toward faster elimination of the drug compared with the normal cats, similar to what has been previously described for the antithyroid drug propylthiouracil in cats. These results also indicate that methimazole is well absorbed when administered orally and has a higher bioavailability than that of propylthiouracil in cats with hyperthyroidism.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)