Adequate pain management is important in maintaining a pet’s quality of life, and numerous innovations in veterinary medicine are helping. Our team at Animal Rehabilitation Center wants to help by providing information about new products and procedures in case your pet can benefit from these advances in pain management.

Synovetin for dogs

Synovetin is a novel veterinary device that uses radioactive agents to increase joint fluid and reduce inflammation inside an arthritic joint. The active agent in Synovetin is Tin-117m, a conversion electron therapeutic device. Information you should know about Synovetin includes:

  • Administration — Synovetin is sterilely injected directly into the affected joint by a trained veterinarian.
  • Mode of action — The Tin-117m emits low energy therapeutic conversion electron energy, and these particles remain in the joint space, eliminating pro-inflammatory macrophages (i.e., cells that cause the inflammation inside the joint) and activating synoviocytes (i.e., the cells that produce joint fluid).
  • Response time — Most dogs show improvement in one month, but many dogs respond in a week or less. 
  • Duration — One injection provides pain relief for an arthritic dog for one year.
  • Safety — Tin-117m decays to tin, a harmless, inert substance, that is transported to nearby lymph nodes and removed from the dog’s body. The radioactive component remains in the joint and is not excreted in the dog’s waste materials. In clinical studies, no significant adverse effects were observed in the treated dogs or their owners.

Platelet rich plasma for pets

Platelet rich plasma (PRP) is a type of regenerative medicine that amplifies growth factors in your pet’s blood to heal tissue. Information you should know about PRP includes:

  • PRP preparation — Blood is sterilely drawn from your pet, and the sample is centrifuged to produce a product that has a higher platelet concentration than whole blood. 
  • Applications — PRP applications are increasing, but currently the most common uses are in arthritis management and tendon and ligament repair. 
  • Administration — The PRP is sterilely injected directly into the affected area by a trained veterinarian.
  • Mode of action — Following tissue trauma, platelets quickly migrate to the injury site. They promote blood clotting, and release growth factors that stimulate the healing process. PRP concentrates these platelets to deliver a high quantity to the affected area.
  • Response time — Most pet owners report improvement in two to three days. Some pets experience a relapse about two weeks after PRP treatment, but a sustained benefit is observed after that time. 
  • Duration — Benefits from PRP can last from five to 12 months, depending on the pet’s condition.
  • Safety — The product comes from the pet, so disease transmission and immune reactions are not a concern.

Intra-articular steroid injections for pets

Joint injections using anti-inflammatories and joint protective substances can alleviate arthritis pain in pets. Information you should know about intra-articular injections includes:

  • Administration — The products are sterilely injected directly into the affected joint by a trained veterinarian.
  • Mode of action — Steroids decrease inflammation inside the joint, and joint protective substances, such as hyaluronic acid, glucosamine, and chondroitin, provide joint lubrication and structural support for the joint cartilage.
  • Response time — Most pets experience relief in one to two days following an intra-articular steroid injection.
  • Duration — Benefits from intra-articular steroid injections can last for weeks to months, depending on the pet’s condition.
  • Safety — Intra-articular steroid injections are relatively safe, but some pets experience swelling and inflammation in the treated joint, and joint infection is a possibility.

Monoclonal antibody treatment for cats

In January 2022, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first monoclonal antibody drug for use in any animal species. The drug is approved for use in arthritic cats to help manage their pain and should be available in the second half of 2022. Treatment options to manage pain in arthritic cats are limited because cats are extremely sensitive to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories, and this product should be helpful in alleviating pain for many of them. Information you should know about this monoclonal antibody treatment includes: 

  • Administration — The monoclonal antibody treatment is administered subcutaneously by a veterinarian.
  • Mode of action — The active ingredient is a cat-specific monoclonal antibody called frunevetmab that recognizes and attaches to a protein, nerve growth factor (NGF), that is involved in pain regulation. When frunevetmab binds to NGF, the pain signal is inhibited from reaching the brain.
  • Response time — Most cats exhibit pain relief within a month.
  • Duration — Injections should be administered once every four weeks for optimal effectiveness.
  • Safety  — The monoclonal antibody treatment has no adverse effects on a cat’s liver or kidneys, and the most common side effects include vomiting, diarrhea, injection site pain, and scabbing on the head and neck.

Pain causes significant stress in pets and can inhibit their ability to heal and decrease their overall quality of life and general well-being. Our veterinary professionals strive to be on the cutting edge to offer your pet the most advanced pain management products and procedures to ensure they don’t suffer needlessly. If your pet is suffering from a painful condition, such as arthritis, contact our team at Animal Rehabilitation Center so we can provide the relief they need.