Feb 16, 2018

Lady, a Sheltie, Successfully Treated for Arthritis with Stem Cells

Posted by Bob under dog arthritis, Dog Stem Cells

This week’s success story is about a beautiful Sheltie, Lady.  Lady suffered from arthritis since she was about two years old.  At eight years old, Lady tore her cruciate ligament and required surgical repair of the ligament.  Her veterinarian, Dr. Jeff Christiansen of Superior Veterinary Surgical Solutions, recommended Lady undergo stem cell therapy to help treat her arthritis and also to expedite healing and reduce scar tissue formation in her surgically repaired knee.  Lady received injections of her own stem cells in both carpi (wrists) along with her left hip and left stifle (knee).

Lady’s owner reported that after stem cell therapy she was able to go for longer walks and is “far more playful than she was before the stem cell treatment.”

To read the rest of Lady’s story, click here.

Does your dog suffer from pain, lameness, or discomfort?  Has your dog been diagnosed with arthritis or injured tendons or ligaments that may be slowing him/her down?  If so, contact VetStem to find VetStem providers in your area.

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Feb 9, 2018

How to Talk to Your Vet About Stem Cells for Your Dog’s Arthritis

It is estimated that 1 in 5 dogs in the United States suffers from osteoarthritis (OA).  OA can present itself in many ways including stiffness, lameness, pain, and limited range of motion.  If your dog is exhibiting any symptoms that may be caused by arthritis, it is best to consult with your veterinarian about all of your treatment options, including stem cell therapy.

You may have seen our many success stories from actual VetStem Regenerative Cell Therapy patients and wondered, “Would my dog benefit from this treatment?”  Or you may find yourself at the end of the road with supplements, pain medications, and/or diet changes and wondering if there are alternatives to these traditional therapies that may be more effective.  Whatever your situation may be, it is always best to research all of your options before deciding which therapy to proceed with.  In this blog, we will help you discuss stem cell therapy with your veterinarian for your arthritic canine companion.

VetStem cell therapy has been used to treat canine arthritis since 2008.  As a newer, more progressive therapy, it is not often at the forefront of your veterinarian’s mind when it comes to first-line treatments for arthritis.  Why, you might ask?  The answer is that only about 10% of practicing veterinarians have advanced training in regenerative medicine and even recent veterinary graduates have had limited exposure to regenerative stem cell medicine.  While VetStem works diligently to change this statistic, don’t be afraid to bring up VetStem cell therapy to your veterinarian if they don’t suggest it first!  Below you will find some resources to help you speak with your veterinarian about stem cell therapy which can help determine if your dog might benefit from the treatment.

First, you may want to print this letter to bring to your vet appointment, in case your veterinarian is not familiar with VetStem cell therapy.  If your veterinarian asks for evidence to support the use of stem cells for treatment of arthritis, you can reference this study which demonstrated the effectiveness of stem cell therapy in the treatment of canine arthritis of the hip.  We also have a study that evaluated stem cell therapy for the treatment of elbow arthritis in dogs.  If your veterinarian has heard of or has used VetStem cell therapy before, inquire as to whether or not he/she thinks your dog may be a good candidate for the therapy.  You can utilize this checklist to help answer this question.  Lastly, let your veterinarian know that our staff veterinarians are available to help answer any questions about stem cell therapy or about specific patients.  They can simply contact us to learn more.

Best of luck and congratulations for taking the initiative to explore stem cell therapy for your canine companion!

Feb 2, 2018

Pit Bull with a Chronic Wound Treated with Platelet Therapy

Pearl is a pit bull who is missing about one quarter of her right front leg.  She was found as a stray and veterinarians were unable to determine why part of her leg was missing.  Pearl’s owner Julia had a prosthetic leg made for Pearl when she was young.  It helped her to run, swim, fetch balls, jump and play with other dogs.

After a while however, Pearl began to develop a wound at the end of her stump that made wearing her prosthetic uncomfortable.  Julia sought treatment for the wound, however nothing seemed to help and she was faced with the possibility of amputating the remainder of Pearl’s right front leg.

Julia had a surgical consult with Dr. Holly Mullen of VCA Emergency Animal Hospital and Referral Center in San Diego, California to discuss amputation and also address a partially torn cruciate ligament in Pearl’s right rear knee.  While surgery could fix both issues, Dr. Mullen suggested trying platelet therapy first.

Utilizing the Pall Veterinary Platelet Enhancement Therapy system (V-PET™), Dr. Mullen treated Pearl’s chronic, non-healing wound and also her partially torn cruciate ligament.  Julia stated, “Within two weeks of the platelet therapy treatment you could see a tremendous increase with the weight she was putting on her right rear leg and by four weeks her stump had completely healed.”  Julia was very grateful for Dr. Mullen’s recommendation to try platelet therapy before jumping into a big surgery.  It was this treatment that saved Pearl’s right front limb from being completely amputated.

To read the rest of Pearl’s story, click here.

Platelet therapy can be a less expensive and less invasive alternative to surgery.  It promotes healing when the body requires help to kick start its natural internal repair processes. Platelets contain a variety of growth factors that, once released, attract progenitor cells, enhance wound healing and stimulate tissue repair.  The most common uses of platelet therapy are for indications such as hard to heal wounds, tendon and ligament injuries, as well as joint disease (osteoarthritis).  VetStem Biopharma has the distribution right to the Pall V-PET™ for the United States and Canada.

If you have an animal who is suffering from a chronic, non-healing wound, or an animal that you think may benefit from platelet therapy, make sure to discuss all of your options with your veterinarian.  VetStem can help you locate a veterinarian who is currently offering the Pall V-PET™.  Simply contact us to locate a veterinary platelet therapy provider in your area.

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Jan 26, 2018

Elsie, a Golden Retriever, Treated for Arthritis with Stem Cells

Elsie’s story is one of inspiration. She had a sad beginning, having been bred in a puppy mill to be sold at a pet store. At 8 weeks old, Monica purchased Elsie, unaware of her origin. As many puppy mill stories go, Elsie began having health issues at a very young age. At just 9 months old, Elsie was diagnosed with severe hip dysplasia and was in need of a hip replacement. Though many told her to put Elsie down, Monica didn’t think twice about the procedure and by 11 months of age, Elsie was given an artificial hip that brought her many years of comfort.

It wasn’t until she wasElsie On The Beach Dog Hip Dysplasia about 10 years old that Elsie’s hip arthritis began to cause her back end to give out. She knew she had to do something to help Elsie be more comfortable and mobile so she sought the expert advice of Dr. Charles Bruce at Alta Vista Animal Hospital in Ontario, Canada. In 2015, Elsie received her first round of stem cell injections. Over the next 11 months, Elsie received stem cell therapy every 3-4 months and her owner reported that she was walking better, playing with her toys, swimming, and was once again enjoying life.

To read more about Elsie’s story, click here.

 

If you think your dog is suffering from pain, discomfort, or lameness, contact VetStem today to see if there is a veterinary stem cell provider in your area.

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Jan 19, 2018

Global Leaders in Stem Cell Therapy Meet in San Francisco

Last week the largest gathering in the world on healthcare convened in San Francisco. The Alliance for Regenerative Medicine (ARM) held its annual “State of the Industry” talk that reviewed 2017 and previewed 2018. It was, without doubt, the most exciting such update since ARM began this briefing.

The briefing on 2017 showed not one, but three cell therapy approvals! Although these cell therapies are directed at cancer therapy, they are cell therapy and showed that the FDA is willing to fast-track really legitimate new cell products. Perhaps more exciting to us in the adult stem cell area is the recommendation by a European Medicines committee to approve the first adipose-derived stem cell therapy for human Crohn’s Disease! This is the same type of cell therapy product that VetStem is testing for approval in veterinary medicine. This would be a first in Europe for people!

The briefing also previewed 2018 with the prospect for more approvals and they stated they expect 40 new cell products in the next five years.

VetStem is proud to be in the forefront in bringing cell therapy into the hands of the practicing veterinarian and we are grateful to the many owners who have trusted VetStem to provide Regenerative Cell Therapy for arthritis and tendon and ligament injuries for their beloved animals.

You can watch the Cell & Gene Therapies State of the Industry Briefing here.

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Jul 11, 2014

What can stem cells be used for? Arthritis

Posted by Bob under dog arthritis, Dog Stem Cells

Stem cells have been and will continue to be a hot news topic.  So what do we know about how they actually work in arthritis?

First, these little cells we call “stem cells” can be found anywhere in the body.  You are alive right now because your own stem cells replace the hundreds of millions of cells you lose every day as a part of normal living.  They are your “spare parts” and are essential.  If your dog has arthritis, stem cells help replace the lost cartilage caused by the disease.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Jun 6, 2014

Stem cells: How do they work?

Ready for a little more detail on how stem cells can work?  Great!

Stem cells are kind of multi-purpose, so how they work depends on the particular need.  Ben has volunteered as our example.  Let’s say Ben, being a Border Collie, is so focused on chasing a frisbie that he fails to see the fence in his pathway.  He crashes into the fence Read the rest of this entry »

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May 28, 2014

What are Stem Cells – The Skinny

Ben, my Border Collie buddy, was searching for a simple explanation of what are stem cells.  Hard to decide if you want them for those sore joints or a torn tendon unless you know a little bit about them!

BenHeadTiltSo here is the skinny version.  Stem cells are the natural repair cells of your body, and in the body of your furry buddies.  All animals have them and they are the way we repair injuries such as a torn ligament or a broken bone.  Scientists have been researching these amazing little cells for decades and we know quite a lot about how they do their job.  Click here for a cute video I found on the internet that discusses stem cells and how they function.  It is a little out dated as far as sources of stem cells but educational none-the-less.  I’ll talk about sources in another blog.

The main jobs these stem cells perform are:

Reduce inflammation

Reduce scar tissue

Reduce pain

Repair damage

They are like paramedics…..they rush to the scene of an accident, decide who needs help first, and reduce the damage or injury severity.  Then they call in the doctors and specialists to get the real regeneration job done.

BenFetch1These guardians are located everywhere in the body and are small, unspecialized cells.  Unlike a heart or liver cell, a stem cell can function to repair all the tissues of the body.  They can help repair a ligament, a tendon, cartilage in your joint, or a burn wound.

So there you have the skinny version.  Next post, I will talk a bit more about how these amazing cells actually do their repair.  If you are interested in reading more on the science of stem cells check out this page.

Hope I didn’t put you to sleep.  I think Ben has had enough education for the day…he is ready for a fetch session (I think I fetch as much as he does)!

See you next post!

Dr. Harman

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May 1, 2014

Introduction of a new blog series, “What Are Stem Cells?”

I am back!  Sorry for the absence.  I needed a break from blogging to be able to finish a couple of book chapters on stem cell therapy and to help out our human stem cell therapy friends with our great data from dog, cat, and horse stem cell cases.  But now I am back and ready to start talking with you all again about stem cells for pets, and how we can give them the best quality of life.

Ben Harman pupI have a new furry buddy since last we talked.  His name is Ben; a Type A red Border Collie.  Ben goes nearly everywhere with me, including to talks I give at dog clubs and stables, and he loves to hang out all day at the office.

I gave an almost two hour educational lecture to the Cavalier King Charles pet owners group, Cavelier Circle San Diego, recently and it was clear from all the many questions asked that there is a real interest in stem cell therapy and how it can be used to treat various conditions in our companion animals.  So I will re-start this blog with discussion about the basics of stem cells.

Ben Harman workingBen will be along as your guide and he will try to keep me focused on the topic!  He proofreads for me.

Since the mainstream media focuses on sensationalism in reporting, I want to give you all an honest and straightforward foundation in the basics of stem cell therapy so that you can decide for your pets, and also maybe for yourself soon, what is the right type of treatment when considering regenerative medicine.

We will talk over the coming weeks about what stem cells really are, how they work, and the practical aspects of how cells are collected and used to treat arthritis and other diseases.  We will cover costs, insurance, and how to choose a veterinarian for your pet’s stem cell procedure.

Stay tuned for the first in this series titled “What are Stem Cells?”

See you then!

Dr. Harman

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Apr 23, 2014

A Dog’s Elbow Dysplasia Pain is Relieved with Stem Cells

I am always thrilled to hear success stories from owners and am excited to be able to share with you Whisper’s story.

“Seven years old and she’s still kicking butt and taking names! Two osteotomies, two surgeries, two stem cell therapies… AMAZING, this little dog!!!”

That’s what Elise recently commented on her now-7-year-old Australian Cattle Dog, on Whisper’s banking renewal form.  Here at Vet-Stem we bank stem cells for future uses.  Whisper was a very special case, done way back in 2009.  She received stem cell therapy, after multiple surgeries and significant pain medications failed to provide relief. This relief lasted for 2 years when she had another treatment using some of her stored stem cells. Read the rest of this entry »

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