A recent article in the Wenatchee World covered the cutting edge veterinary procedure of stem cell therapy. The article told of a 14-year-old mixed breed dog named Roxy that received the therapy after suffering from severely arthritic knees. Roxy had absolutely no energy, could hardly walk, and was losing her quality of life. Roxy’s owner decided on stem cell therapy in an effort to extend his beloved dog’s health and happiness. And, he says, it worked. Roxy now has much more energy, goes for two-mile walks, and can move without pain.
Stem cell therapy comes with a lot of controvery, as much of the earlier research on these cells came from embryos. But the treatment Roxy received is different. This treatment came from adult stem cells, which are taken from the skin, fat and bone marrow of the animal being treated. Once the cells are collected, they are injected into the damaged area – in Roxy’s case, her joints. The cells then help rebuild lost cartilage, reduce calcium deposits, and help the joints operate more smoothly.
To do this procedure, the veterinarian must have credentials from a company called Vet-Stem. Vet-Stem was formed in 2002 to bring regenerative medicine technology to the veterinary profession. They take the latest developments in human medical technology and provide easy-to-use services and products to the practicing veterinarian.
According to Vet-Stem, stem cell therapy can be effective for a number of pet health conditions, including osteoarthritis, tendon repair, fractures, muscular dystrophy, autoimmune disorders, stroke, and heart attack.
What do you think? Would you consider stem cell therapy for your pet?
Heather Kalinowski lives in the Seattle area with her husband, newborn son, and two rescued pups – an Italian Greyhound named Ava and a Spaniel mix named Jackson. She enjoys reading, writing, spending time with her family, and volunteering with Italian Greyhound Rescue.