Brand: SWITCH FLUKE 10 Drench
Company: BOEHRINGER INGELHEIM (MERIAL)
DELIVERY FORM: «drench» for oral administration.
- Abamectin: 2.0 g/L (equivalent to 0.2%)
- Levamisole hydrochloride: 80 g/L (equivalent to 8.0%)
- Triclabendazole: 120 g/L (equivalent to 12.0%)
CHEMICAL CLASS of the active ingredient(s):
- Abamectin: macrocyclic lactone
- Levamisole: imidazothiazole
- Tricabendazole: benzimidazole
PARASITES CONTROLLED * (spectrum of activity)
* Country differences may apply: read the product label!
- Adult and immature gastrointestinal roundworms:
- Barber’s Pole Worm: Haemonchus placei
- Small Brown Stomach Worm: Ostertagia spp (incl. type II Ostertagiasis)
- Black Scour Worm: Trichostrongylus colubriformis, Trichostrongylus longispicularis (incl. inhibited L4 larvae)
- Stomach Hair Worm: Trichostrongylus axei
- Small Intestinal Worm: Cooperia oncophora, Cooperia punctata, Cooperia surnabada, (incl. inhibited L4 larvae)
- Thin-Necked Intestinal Worm: Nematodirus helvetianus, Nematodirus spathiger
- Nodule Worm: Oesophagostomum radiatum
- Large Bowel Worm: Oesophagostomum venulosum
- Hookworm: Bunostomum phlebotomum
- Whipworm: Trichuris spp
- Intestinal Threadworm: Strongyloides papillosus
- Large Mouthed Bowel Worm: Chabertia spp
- Lungworms: Dictyocaulus viviparus
- Liver Fluke: Fasciola hepatica, early immature, immature and mature stages.
1 ml product per 10 kg bodyweight, equivalent to:
- 0.2 mg/kg abamectin
- 8 mg/kg levamisole hydrochloride (6.8 mg levamisole)
- 12 mg/kg triclabendazole
Read the product label for further details on dosing
- LD50 (acute oral) in rats:
- Abamectin: 10 mg/kg (for the a.i.)
- Levamisole: 180 mg/kg (for the a.i.)
- Triclabendazole: >5000 mg/kg (for the a.i.).
Suspected poisoning? Read the articles on abamectin safety, levamisole safety and triclabendazole safetyin this site.
Withholding periods (=withdrawal times) for meat & milk (country-specific differences may apply: read the product label)
- Meat: New Zealand 49 days
- Milk for human consumption: New Zealand, Sheep & Cattle: Milk intended for sale for human consumption must be discarded during treatment and for not less than 35 days following the last treatment. Not to be used within 28 days of calving.
WARNING !!!: Never use on humans, dogs or cats
You may be interested in the following articles in this site dealing with the general safety of veterinary products:
- Safety for humans
- Safety for domestic animals
- Safety for the environment
- Hazard classifications of pesticides
Risk of resistance? YES
Unfortunately, resistance of several gastrointestinal roundworms to abamectin (and other macrocyclic lactones) and levamisole is already very high and very frequent worldwide in sheep and goats. Cases of multiple resistance (i.e. simultaneous) to two or even three of these chemical classes have also been reported. Most affected worm species are:
- Sheep: Haemonchus spp, Ostertagia spp /Teladorsagia spp, Trichostrongylus spp, Nematodirus spp, Chabertia ovina
- Cattle: Cooperia spp, Ostertagia spp, Haemonchus spp, Trichostrongylus spp, Oesophagostomum spp.
Resistance of liver flukes to triclabendazole (and albendazole) was already discovered in the mid 1990's in Australia in sheep. Since then it has been reported in several other countries (e.g. New Zealand, UK, Ireland, Spain, Argentina), also in cattle (e.g. Australia, The Netherlands, Argentina). However, the incidence so far is not that serious as for roundworm resistance to benzimidazoles and other nematicides. Nevertheless, in certain regions products with triclabendazole may not protect livestock adequately against liver flukes.
This means that if this product does not achieve the expected efficacy against the mentioned parasites, it can be due to resistance and not to incorrect use, which is usually the most frequent cause of product failure.
It is generally accepted that the use of mixtures of active ingredients with different modes of action against a given parasite can delay the appearance of resistance (in this case abamectin and levamisole). But only if the concerned parasites are susceptible to all the actives in the mixture. If not, the mixture is likely to promote multi-resistant parasites, because the selection pressure against all actives remains in place. Mixtures such as this one may provide peace-of mind to those users that do not know the resistance status of worms in their property: at least one of the actives will work... This may be the case for a while. But the risk that some worm species become resistant to all components after a few years using the same or comparable mixtures is considerable. If it is not too late, a better alternative is to determine the resistance status in the property and to rotate among products (not mixtures) against which the worms have not yet developed resistance, stopping the use of those chemical classes that have already shown resistance problems.
Alternative chemical classes/active ingredients to prevent resistance of gastrointestinal roundworms through product rotation:
- Benzimidazoles, e.g. albendazole, febantel, fenbendazole, oxfendazole, etc. Similar or even worse resistance problems than macrocyclic lactones.
- Salicylanilides (e.g. closantel): effective only against certain gastrointestinal roundworms. Not available in some countries. Resistance to closantel has been reported in some countries.
- Tetrahydropyrimidines (e.g. morantel, pyrantel): effective only against certain gastrointestinal roundworms. Not available in some countries. Resistance to morantel has been reported in some countries.
- Nitroxinil: effective only against certain gastrointestinal roundworms (e.g. Bunostomum spp, Haemonchus spp, Oesophagostomum spp). Not available in some countries.
Alternative chemical classes/active ingredients to prevent resistance of liver flukes through product rotation:
- Closantel (salicylanilide): effective only against ≥8 weeks old liver flukes.
- Clorsulon: effective only against ≥8 weeks old liver flukes.
- Nitroxinil: effective only against ≥8 (sheep) or ≥7 (cattle) weeks old liver flukes.
- Oxyclozanide (salicylanilide): effective only against ≥12 (sheep) or ≥10 (cattle) weeks old liver flukes.
- Rafoxanide (salicylanilide): effective only against ≥6 weeks old liver flukes.
These alternative products may not be available in all countries, or may not be available as drenches, or may not be effective against all the concerned parasites.
It is highly recommended to periodically check the resistance status of each property performing appropriate tests (e.g. fecal egg counts) under supervision of a veterinary doctor. Such tests are now routinely available for most producers in developed countries.
Learn more about resistance and how it develops.
Are the active ingredients of this product ORIGINAL* or GENERICS**?
- Abamectin: GENERIC (introduced in the 1980s)
- Levamisole: GENERIC (introduced in the 1960s)
- Tricabendazole: GENERIC (introduced in the 1970s)
*Meaning that they are still patent protected and generics are not yet available
**Meaning that they have lost patent protection and may be acquired from manufacturers of generic active ingredients other than the holder of the original patent.
COUNTRIES where this brand/product is marketed: New Zealand
GENERIC BRANDS available? Yes, in Australia and New Zealand, not elsewhere, perhaps not in this particular composition. This product itself contains generic active ingredients.
Click here to learn more about GENERIC vs. ORIGINAL drugs.
For an overview on the most used drench brands for livestock click here.
SWITCH FLUKE 10 is a drench brand combining two active ingredients with different modes of action against gastrointestinal worms (abamectin and levamisole hydrochloride) with a flukicide (triclabendazole).
Abamectin, one of the first macrocyclic lactones developed, was introduced already in the 1980s (by MSD AGVET). As all macrocyclic lactones, abamectin is an endectocide, i.e. it is simultaneously effective against some external parasites and against internal parasites (mainly roundworms). As for other macrocyclic lactones, abamectin has no efficacy whatsoever against tapeworms and flukes. Abamectin is considered as the "cheap" ivermectin, with a similar spectrum of efficacy but less potent and slightly more toxic. It is abundantly used in ruminants, much less in pig, poultry and pets. Abamectin is also used in agricultural and hygiene pesticides worldwide. Interestingly abamectin is widely used on livestock in Australia and New Zealand but insignificantly in the EU, the USA and Canada.
Levamisole is the most veteran anthelmintic in this combination. It was introduced by JANSSEN already in the 1960s (NILVERM, RIPERCOL). It has a broad-spectrum of activity against roundworms (gastrointestinal and pulmonary) but no efficacy whatsoever against tapeworms and flukes. It is also completely ineffective against external parasites of livestock (ticks, flies, lice, mites, etc). Levamisole has been used massively worldwide in countless generic formulations. It still remains one of the most preferred low-cost anthelmintics for livestock worldwide. It is only marginally used in horses and pets. It is not used in agriculture.
Triclabendazole is a narrow-spectrum benzimidazole introduced in the 1970s (by CIBA-GEIGY). It has no efficacy against roundworms or tapeworms. However it was and remains the only flukicide effective against adults as well as all immature stages of liver flukes, which are the most damaging stages due to their destructive migration through the liver tissues. For this reason it has been for decades and still remains the most widely used livestock flukicide worldwide. It is ineffectivy against any external parasites (ticks, flies, lice, mites, etc) of livestock. It is abundantly used in ruminants, but not in other livestock, horses or pets. It is also used in human medicines. It is not used in agriculture.
Levamisole and triclabendazole administered as a drench have no residual effect, i.e. they kill the parasites shortly after administration, but do not significantly protect the animals against re-infestation by infective stages in their environment. Whether such protection can be ensured by abamectin depends on the resistance status of the concerned worm species.
In ruminants, reducing the amount of feed slows down the exit flow of the rumen and prolongs the time during which the active ingredient remains there and is absorbed. Consequently it is advisable to reduce the access of animals to feed (especially to fresh pasture, not to water) 24 hours before administration. For the same reason, it is better to keep the animals away from food for about 6 hours after drenching. However sick or weak animals should not be kept away from food and fasting animals should have access to water.
Thoroughly shaking suspensions before use is crucial for efficacy. If the active ingredient remains in the sediment, a few animals may get most of the active ingredient and will be overdosed, and the large majority will get almost only solvents and will be underdosed.
Click here for general information on good practices for the prevention and control of gastrointestinal worms in livestock.
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