Care Center
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Frequently Asked Questions

Can my pet be cured of cancer?

This will depend entirely on what kind of cancer your pet has. In most cases, we work toward achieving “remission” for your pet rather than a cure. Remission is reached when the patient has no symptoms whatsoever from the original cancer. It is not considered a cure because the majority of cancers will recur at some point in time. So Oncologists tend to talk in terms of probability of remission, and survival times. These will, vary widely depending on the kind of cancer your pet has, at what stage it has been caught, as well as other factors such as where on the body the cancer is located. The central focus in caring for any pet with cancer is always on their quality of life.

What sort of treatment is best for my pet’s cancer?

Depending upon the type of cancer, your veterinarian and our Oncology staff will advise you as to which of the three major modalities (surgery, chemotherapy, radiation) are best for your pet. It is not common for all three modalities to be used together, but often combining two modalities can be far more effective than one alone.

Surgery is used to remove, or partially remove (called “debulking”) discrete masses, either from inside a body cavity, or from the pet’s body wall or extremity.

Chemotherapy is used for widely disseminated, or multifocal cancers. Chemotherapeutic drugs are carried by the bloodstream to all parts of the body, so it is ideally suited to treating cancer on a body-wide basis.

Radiation therapy is used to treat focal tumors that are either not surgically removable, or when the family has elected not to pursue surgery, but still wants to treat the cancer, or the pain the cancer is causing. You can read more about Radiation Therapy here.

Chemotherapy in animals? Not sure I want to put my pet through that?

Fortunately, chemotherapy for pets is experienced very differently than it is for humans.

While practically all anticancer drugs have side effects, they would not be used if their potential effect against the cancer did not outweigh the possible side effects. When side effects do occur, they typically are not nearly as severe as those that occur in humans. Because of this, and because our Oncologists are prescribing protocols based as much on their potential side effects as on their efficacy against tumors, we feel that chemotherapy can be perfectly appropriate and therapeutically humane. We simply would not recommend it otherwise. And we see hundreds if not thousands of success stories every year.

What side effects will chemotherapy or radiation therapy cause?

Potential side effects of chemotherapy drugs may be:

1. Loss of hair. This is unpredictable and can vary from no hair loss to complete baldness. This is NOT as common in animals as it is in people because their hair does not grow continuously throughout their lives. In any breed, areas in which the hair is shaved will be slow to re-grow.

2. Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite. It usually occurs 2 to 7 days after chemotherapy treatment. Anti-nausea (anti-emetics) are available to help avoid this potential side effect.

3. Low blood counts. This is not a problem unless infection occurs. The time at which the white blood cell count is lowest is usually 5 to 7 days after treatment. Your pet may need oral or intravenous antibiotics.

Radiation therapy usually has minimal side effects, and is generally limited to local changes in skin: hair loss, discoloration, swelling (often times appearing much like a sun burn in a fair-skinned person). All potential side effects will be discussed with you prior to treatment.

Oncology

Neal Mauldin, DVM, DACVIM (Internal Medicine & Oncology), DACVR (RO)
Kelsey Pohlmann, DVM, MS, DACVR-RO
Corrine Camero, DVM (Practice Limited to Medical Oncology)

With great improvement in diagnostic technologies, cancer is now more widely diagnosed in pets than ever before. Fortunately, Care Center has the newest technology available to treat dogs and cats with cancer.

A diagnosis of cancer is never easy. Our compassionate, highly trained staff is here to help. Care Center has the board-certified specialists and latest equipment to provide whatever treatment is best for your pet. We will assist you every step of the way to select the course that will provide your pet with the best quality of life.

At Care Center we treat many forms of cancer and have a variety of treatment options available, including but not limited to surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy.

Treatment options include the following, individually or in combination:

Surgery

Removal of a cancerous tumor through surgical intervention is usually the first choice. Or, surgery may be the first step in a multi-modal treatment process. If surgery is not an option, other modalities are considered, either alone or in combination. Our team of board-certified surgeons will help guide you through the evaluation process and collaborate with the oncology team to formulate your pet’s path to recovery.

Radiation Oncology

Radiation therapy uses high-energy particles or waves to destroy or damage cancer cells. One of the most common treatments for cancer, radiation therapy can be given alone or used with other treatments, such as surgery or chemotherapy. At Care Center, we are able to provide whatever type of radiation therapy is best to treat your pet’s cancer.

+ Stereotactic Radiosurgery
A Revolutionary New Cancer Treatment Option for Pets

+ The Benefits of SRS

+ Types of Cancer Treatable with SRS

+ Conventional Radiation Therapy (RT)

PetCure: A Partnership with Benefits

PetCure OncologyOur expertise + our equipment means your pet is in the best hands when any form of radiation therapy is prescribed.

Already the standard of care for treatment of a wide range of cancers in humans, our new equipment – a Varian Triology– gives us the option to provide any type of radiation therapy required. The Trilogy, plus our outstanding and experienced team of veterinary specialists, will provide the best possible treatment option for your pet’s specific type of cancer.

And, because we are open 24 hours a day, patients are always monitored by experienced emergency veterinarians. We are dedicated to providing all of our patients with the most complete and integrated cancer therapy possible while taking into consideration the needs of both the owner and their pet.

Medical Oncology

Some cancers are best treated systemically through chemotherapy, or via a more targeted approach, with immunotherapy.

+ Chemotherapy

+ Immunotherapy

For more information, to schedule a consultation, or if you are a veterinarian and would like to make a referral, please contact Taylor Cull, Referral Coordinator, at (513) 530-0911. Concierge services are available to assist with travel arrangements.
 

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