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Pet Cancer Clinical Trials Help You, Help Others

If your Tripawd is battling cancer, did you know pet cancer clinical trials can help provide medications, reduce medical expenses and contribute to cancer research for pets and humans alike?

Clinical trails help doctors in the medical and veterinary fields investigate methods to improve detection and treatment of cancer, as well as improve the quality of care each patient receives.

Because many pet cancers act similarly to the way comparable cancers behave in humans (especially osteosarcoma), pets are ideal candidates to test promising new treatments. Many of today’s mainstream treatments for humans were often first proven beneficial in dogs through clinical trials.

Tripawd Hunter recently reported that she is participating in an Ohio State University osteosarcoma clinical trial at her oncology clinic in Los Angeles, the Veterinary Cancer Group.

While most trials are conducted on-site at a veterinary teaching hospital, more oncology groups are partnering with vet schools and cancer researchers who agree to conduct dog cancer clinical trials directly at their clinics. In addition, websites like Vet Cancer Trials and groups like Animal Clinical Investigation exist to match veterinary school clinical trials with veterinary oncology clinics to help more dogs than ever.

How Clinical Trials Work

According to the Perseus Foundation’s Clinical Trial Handbook (click here to download in PDF form), clinical trials are conducted at four distinct phases. In each phase, scientists seek answers to questions like: What is the correct dosage and use of the treatment? Does the new treatment have anti-cancer effects (i.e., does it shrink tumors)? How does the new treatment compare with existing ones? And finally, they test the new treatment against at least two established treatment regimens, by randomly assigning each one to a given group of patient.

There are often many requirements to participate in a clinical trial, which may include frequent visits to the vet and following restrictions on supplements and foods. In every instance, the dog’s quality of life is placed first.

In return for following the requirements, dogs get to receive things like a promising new drug and/or cutting-edge treatment. Their humans often (but not always) receive discounts on treatment costs.

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