Updated: 1 August 2022
Issued: January 2017

Note – Cu-Algesic is no longer registered with APVMA

Copper indomethacin is registered with APVMA to CEVA with a registration date of 29

March 2017, but no expiry date is listed.

Copper indomethacin is not listed as a product on the CEVA website:


Indomethacin is a potent non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug and is a prohibited substance under the Australian Rules of Racing. The product Cu-Algesic® , which contains indomethacin, is no longer registered for use in horses. Indomethacin is also available in numerous human preparations for oral, parenteral and topical use.

Substances containing indomethacin are Schedule 4 Poisons, which are either a Prescription Animal Remedy or a Prescription Only Medicine, the use or supply of which should only be by or on the order of a registered permitted veterinarian.

Trainers are reminded that it is difficult to make any reliable predictions about the clearance of indomethacin from horses based on the information available. This is especially so after multiple doses or exposures to the drug. Further, similar to other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, there is a high risk of contamination in racing stables by use of indomethacin in other horses.

There is very limited information is available on the excretion of indomethacin in horses.

  • Large doses of indomethacin may result in longer clearance times than smaller doses.
  • Multiple doses or exposures to indomethacin may result in longer clearance times than single dose or exposure.
  • Different pharmaceutical preparations of indomethacin may have different bio availabilities of the drug which may result in different clearance times.
  • Excretion of indomethacin is intermittent and inconsistent in most horses, leading to
    uncertainty when a sample does not contain indomethacin because subsequent
    samples might contain indomethacin.
  • Environmental contamination with indomethacin may result in horses not treated with indomethacin being contaminated with the drug and cause a positive detection in urine.

Racing Victoria considers that the only safe way for trainers to avoid contravening the prohibited substance offence rules with indomethacin is not to use indomethacin but to use other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs where excretion patterns are well established and more reliable to predict.

An elective non-raceday urine sample should be analysed from any horse treated with indomethacin prior to racing. Importantly, a negative result does not predict whether future samples will or will not contain indomethacin.

Products registered for use in horse are registered with the APVMA.

Registered products can be found at the PubCRIS website:

Registered products are identifiable by their labels which contain an APVMA Approved Number. Racing Victoria considers the administration of unregistered products to racehorses (at any time) presents a high risk of contravening the prohibited substance rule.