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Side Effects of Chemotherapy on Dogs

Video transcription

Hello, I'm Dr. David Cathcart. I'm a family practice physician from Heartland Regional Medical Center in St. Joseph, and we're going to talk about chemotherapy drugs, and their side effects today. As it turns out, chemotherapy has the same side effects in dogs, as it does in people. Now I've heard this, and you may have heard this as well, that supposedly chemotherapy doesn't effect dogs as much as it does people. Well the real answer is that it does effect them just as much. The problem is, is that because of their size, and the way chemotherapy has to be dosed, based on the size of the animal, or the person, the concentration of chemotherapy just can't get to the level that it needs to get to in a dog, because they're so much smaller, to do the job of killing those rapidly dividing cells. So he says that quite honestly, or quite simply, chemotherapy alone for dogs just doesn't work. So it has to be associated, or combined with another type of treatment. And one of the treatments he mentioned is immune modulation therapy, or essentially teaching the immune system to attack those cancer cells. If they can do that, in combination with chemotherapy, which would be giving it a much lower dose, than it would be for a human, then that sometimes can be very effective. This is Dr. Cathcart telling you all I know about chemotherapy, and dogs.

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