Cancer care for your pet
Quality of life is the primary concern.
The oncology service at Advanced Veterinary Specialists provides compassionate cancer care for your pet. Most people have been exposed to cancer in some way, so the thought of their pet with cancer can be quite troubling. However, there are some important differences with our canine and feline family members. Our goal is to achieve a good quality of life for as long as possible and not just a cure at all costs. Treatment plans are designed to circumvent adverse effects; often our patients feel so good that they and those around them cannot tell that they are undergoing treatment. In most cases, patients are healthy pets with a great quality of life.
Below is a list of therapy options. These are often used in combination to achieve the most optimal results and, most of these treatments are performed on an out-patient basis. We will work with you to achieve success in maintaining or improving your pet’s quality of life for as long as possible, within the limits that you feel are appropriate for you and your pet.
We take your pet’s health and quality of life as seriously as you do.
Though we use some of the same medications as in human medicine, we use doses and protocols geared towards optimal treatment of our pets. Generally less than 20% of our patients have any adverse effects. Protocols are constantly adjusted to minimize these effects. Most pets lose little if any hair. All therapy is overseen by a Board certified veterinary medical oncologist.
We have established an ongoing relationship with a human radiation therapy group to have state-of-the-art modalities of treatment (including photon and electron tele-therapy and brachy-therapy), treatment planning (including IMRT), and equipment available to our patients. Though the thought of radiation is very intimidating, most patients, including geriatric pets, handle radiation very well. All therapy and planning is supervised by a Board certified veterinary radiation oncologist.
Immunology and Gene Therapy
These modalities are perhaps some of the most innovative and encouraging areas of research in human and veterinary medicine today. There are ongoing studies, protocols and vaccines that may be available for your pet. Here we attempt to stimulate the body to help itself deal with the cancer. Minimal, if any, side effects are seen.
If a tumor can be removed completely, it may be cured. However if it cannot be removed it will be reduced in size before surgery or treated after surgery by one or more of the other modalities of therapy. The surgeons we use are Board certified specialists who have been trained to maximize the benefit of surgery to the patient with minimal compromise of quality of life.
Our Oncology Department provides specialized medical and radiation oncology services. We are supported by the other specialists that provide diagnostic imaging, internal medicine, and surgery services. We also have a psychology support service and run a grief group supervised by a psychologist who has extensive experience in pet-loss support. We have a recognized teaching program and run a certified medical oncology residency program. We feel it is our obligation to keep the general practitioners apprised of the new developments in cancer therapy and to help them provide optimal cancer care to their clients and patients.
Please give us the opportunity to discuss your pet’s disease process and help you come to a decision about your pet’s future. We consider success to be the improvement and/or maintenance of your pet’s quality of life for as long as possible, within the limits that you feel are appropriate for you and your pet.