Approved by Animal Institute Committee: 11/16/99
Intraperitoneal (IP) administration of drugs is acceptable unless contra indicated by published side effects. IP administration of certain drugs such as Ketamine is preferable because the volume to be administered as well as its properties can cause local tissue necrosis when administered via the intramuscular route (IM).
Medium (< 1 Kg) Animals
The IP route of drug administration is not precluded as an option but must be performed carefully avoiding accidental perforation of the viscera. There are only a few examples of drugs for medium size animals such as rabbits in which the IP route is published as the recommended or acceptable route (eg. barbituates, midazolam). In general, investigators should follow the recommended dosing routes that are published in the most current laboratory animal formulary.
Larger (> 1 Kg) Animals
There is: a) more muscle mass available for safe IM injections; b) more skin available for administration of a subcutaneous (SC) injection; c) more accessible vasculature for intravenous (IV) injection therefore these routes of drug administration are encouraged in these larger animals unless there is a good and justifiable reason to use the IP route of drug administration.
NOTE: Investigators using the IP route for drug administration should learn the necessary skills and anatomy to use this route so as to minimize any side effects that may result from an improper IP injection.