Shadow’s Exciting News

Shadow is participating in a clinical trial!

Let me begin by telling you that back in May – while I was still at my brother’s home – one of our two vets at Sunrise Animal Hospital called to talk to me about an exciting new treatment for canine joint disease that is still in the clinical testing phase.

Dr. Simpson told me that this new therapy (HUC-DT) uses the stem cells from human umbilical cords; and that he felt Shadow would be a good candidate for the treatment. A quick note here for those of you who, like me, have heard of stem cell therapy but aren’t familiar with how it works: stem cells are the cells present in all our bodies that are there to help heal and rebuild tissues. As we age, we have fewer stem cells but their healing and regenerative effect remains intact if needed.*

When we give a pet human stem cells, the stem cells migrate to the areas of pain and inflammation by following the body’s natural cues, and anchor themselves within the tissues, and begin stimulating the dog’s natural stem cell population to fight inflammation and rebuild tissues.”

The old method of using stem cell therapies in pets was mostly limited to what is known as mesenchymal stem cell transplants (MST). This method required not one surgery, but two surgeries. The first surgery involved anesthetizing the pet and harvesting a large amount of fat cells. Those cells were then sent to a lab where the stem cells were extracted, given various chemical treatments to “boost their vitality”, and shipped back to the veterinarian. Then the pet had to undergo anesthesia a second time to have the treated stem cells implanted. Such a process is not only costly and time-consuming, but also puts the pet at risk of potential dangerous anesthesia side effects twice. Not really a viable option for the older pet.*

The process Dr. Simpson used for Shadow (and other patients, including his own dog) does not involve anesthesia, or any chemicals to boost the stem cells’ viability. Dr. Simpson explains the whole procedure in the video clip below. (We had a slight technical issue at the very beginning which cut off some of Dr. Simpson’s introduction, but that’s okay. You can still get the idea.)

We also took videos of Shadow walking, and then jogging, down the long hallway outside the treatment area so we can document the results of the therapy. And we took some other photos as well.

Hubby and I are both cautiously optimistic about the eventual positive effects on Shadow’s overall quality of life; and excited by the all-natural and safety aspects of the treatment.

On average, results can be expected between four and six weeks following the treatment; but many of Dr. Simpson’s other patients started presenting subtle changes in behavior within two weeks that indicated the treatment was already helping them. I will follow up with more blog posts about how the treatment works for Shadow.

Lastly, I want to give credit where it’s due: All of the “technical” wording that’s either followed by an asterisk (*) or set within quotation marks is either paraphrased or directly quoted from Dr. Simpson’s white paper that he wrote about the HUC-DT treatment. He provided me with a copy for information purposes, and so I could write this post. Please feel free to ask questions in the comments. If I don’t know the answers, I’ll ask Dr. Simpson.

18 thoughts on “Shadow’s Exciting News

  1. My Golden Life says:

    Thanks, Pamela! We’re hoping it helps Shadow, too. But, even if this treatment doesn’t help Shadow directly, knowing that the data we collect from her treatment may help millions of future pets – including Ducky – makes it all worthwhile.

    The nice thing is that even if the treatment doesn’t help Shadow’s arthritis, it may help her liver enough to make it possible to discontinue the Denamarin. The stem cells migrate within the dog’s body to areas where they are needed. At least that’s what the data is showing so far. So, I’m really excited about the possibilities. We will just have to wait and see.


  2. Pamela says:

    I can’t watch the video right now–not enough bandwidth. But I’m very interested and hope it is a good treatment for Shadow. How wonderful that you and Shadow are helping to provide data for the research that could possibly help millions of other pets (and perhaps humans).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Tails Around the Ranch says:

    Oh my gosh…this is sooooo cool! How exciting to be able to be a part of something so cutting edge with such tremendous potential. Sending oodles of poodles best wishes with extra ear scratches for sweet Shadow. 💖

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jan K says:

    It’s so exciting, not only for you and Shadow, but for so many dogs out there who could benefit from this therapy if these trials go well! So not only are you hopefully helping Shadow, but it’s such a great thing to do to potentially help other animals down the road. I love how simple it is too.
    Oh, that’s one question I have – so is this a one-time thing or does it have to be repeated at any point if it works?
    What a progressive vet you have – that’s so great! We will be keeping all paws crossed here for good results. ♥

    Liked by 2 people

    • My Golden Life says:

      Normally, it’s a one-time treatment; however, if no results are apparent with the first one, the vet and client have the option of repeating the treatment. It can take up to six months to see results, though, so the repeat wouldn’t happen until the six-month period has passed.

      One thing I didn’t mention is that dogs with heart conditions and cancer may not be good candidates for the treatment. That’s why pre-treatment chemistry panels and x-rays are so important. I should have included this info in this post, but I wanted to get the basic info out there.


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