Mathea Kelley

NYTHA Advises Longer Flunixin Withdrawal Time

Horsemen's group says current 24-hour period leaves them vulnerable to positive test.

Saying the current withdrawal time on the books for flunixin (Banamine) could leave New York horsemen and veterinarians vulnerable to positive tests, the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association is recommending extending the time by an additional eight hours.

In a letter to members and others, the NYTHA said there has been growing concern in recent months that the New York rule with a recommended withdrawal time of 24 hours for flunixin does not provide horsemen and veterinarians with sufficient safe harbor from possible positive tests. The NYTHA is recommending horsemen follow a 32-hour withdrawal time for flunixin, which is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug.

The group said its own study, followed by an NYTHA-funded research project with the Racing Medication and Testing Consortium, led to the new recommended withdrawal time for flunixin.

The recommended withdrawal time of 32 hours matches the new withdrawal time adopted by the Association of Racing Commissioners International upon recommendation from the RMTC, and implemented as part of a new national uniform medication program (based upon a single IV dose of 1 milligram per kilogram).