Friday, November 9, 2012

Veterinary Highlights: Subcutaneous Chemotherapy?

subcutaneous [suhb-kyoo-tey-nee-uhs] - under the skin; a subcutaneous injection is an injection in which a needle is inserted just under the skin.
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The main drawbacks to chemotherapy are the possible side effects and the stress and inconvenience of multiple trips to the veterinary clinic for treatment.

What if chemotherapy could be done without all the back and forth?

A recently published study evaluated the option of a single subcutaneous infusion of chemotherapy in place of traditional chemotherapy protocol (IV drug administration over several weeks) for post-surgery dogs with osteosarcoma. The results look promising.

The results were comparable to the standard protocol, both in terms of side effects and survival time.

An infusion of the chemotherapy,  using a sterile urinary catheter under the skin, over the course of three, five, and seven days was tested. It doesn't seem to make a difference whether the therapy is administered in three or seven days. Possibly, then, three days might be all it takes.

Source article: Chemotherapy Made Simple
Further reading: Evaluation of a single subcutaneous infusion of carboplatin as adjuvant chemotherapy for dogs with osteosarcoma: 17 cases (2006-2010).

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