Treatment Options for Canine Osteosarcoma
Canine Osteosarcoma (K9 OSA) is a highly metastatic, aggressive cancer that requires aggressive treatment whether you choose conventional therapy, alternative therapy, or integrative therapy which is a combination of both. Treatment options for canine osteosarcoma has two goals: pain relief, and curative intent.
There is no cure for canine osteosarcoma, but there is the possibility of managing dog bone cancer and extending life at the highest quality your pet’s, and your, choices will allow.
Treating osteosarcoma is a collaborative effort between you, your pet, and your caregivers. Whatever you choose with love is never a wrong choice. My personal feeling is to embrace a holistic attitude and consider the possible benefits of life enhancing alternative therapies, while holding more radical mainstream options for backup.
No single protocol works in every situation, but some give you a better shot at extending your dog’s quality of life. Quality of life is always my primary goal.
When Nikki was first diagnosed, he was not considered a candidate for amputation. So we sought out alternative approaches which, to my amazement, gave us eight beautiful months after diagnosis. Had we taken another road, I don’t know how much better we would have done. Yes, there are the super survivors in both the holistic and the mainstream camps that may make it to three years beyond diagnosis and counting, but they are in the slim minority. I hope your dog is one of them. It’s certainly something to aim for. Knowing what’s available in conventional medicine and alternative therapies can certainly give you an edge.
Mainstream and Holistic Viewpoints
Conventional or mainstream medicine views cancer as a local problem, a group of mutated cells that uncontrollably grows, multiplying into a mass or tumor. As the mutated cells continue to grow, normal cell growth, replication, differentiation, and maturation becomes unregulated. This leads to further uncontrolled cell growth in the body.
Mainstream, medicine’s answer is to cut out the local lesion, burn up any left over local cells with radiation, and hope to destroy fast growing cells and metastatic activity with chemotherapy – treatment which suppresses the immune system.
The holistic view considers cancer as a systemic disease resulting from a suppressed immune system since a healthy immune system would recognize any mutated cells as abnormal and elicit a response called apoptosis, or cell death.
This model looks at a malfunctioning immune system as the root of all cancers, including canine osteosarcomas, since a proper check and balance system would recognize and knock out aberrant cells anywhere in the body. And first line of treatment would include bolstering the immune system.
There is a third model in alternative medicine which asserts that cancer is allowed to proliferate due to a lack of pancreatic enzymes. And when pancreatic enzymes are supplied in oral supplements in a high dosage, cancers are killed. Proponents, working with a nutritional-metabolic therapy have seen amazing results that far surpass radiation and chemotherapy. Check the category “Enzyme Therapy.”
Statistics show that mainstream methods, alone, may not be the best choice. While they can reduce the number of cancer cells present in the body, they don’t address the underlying cause. Conventional treatment prognosis for most osteosarcoma (OSA) patients is grim.
Surgery, radiation and chemo are only one segment of treatment. Natural immune stimulating compounds, to stimulate the system to recognize the cancer, are also needed. Additionally, there are natural supplements (see below) that can block off blood supply to a tumor and herb-derived drugs that target cancer cells, among others. Powerful natural options exist.
Canine OSA Mainstream Treatment Options for Curative Intent
Canine osteosarcoma mainstream treatment options combine surgery and chemotherapy in an attempt to cure osteosarcoma.
Surgery to Prevent Metastasis
The standard first line of conventional treatment for osteosarcoma is to amputate the affected limb. Aside from eliminating the painful mass, removing the primary tumor will prevent metastasis, providing the cancer hasn’t already spread. Keep in mind, that 90% of the dogs diagnosed with osteosarcoma have microscopic metastasis at the time of diagnosis. So whether or not metastasis shows up on a radiograph, your dog will be treated as if the tumor has already spread.
Most dogs recover quite well from an amputation and will be running and playing in a very short time.
If for some reason, personal or medical, amputation is not chosen, limb-sparing (limb salvage) may be considered. In this procedure, the affected bone is removed and either replaced with a bone graft or the bone is regrown by a process called bone transport osteogenesis. Complications can arise, including bone graft failure and bone infection.
Chemotherapy to Prevent or Delay Metastasis
Metastasis is the most common cause of death in dogs with osteosarcoma. So the addition of chemotherapy drugs into curative intent protocols is seen as vital to longer term survival. Used in combination with surgery or radiation therapy, the drugs attempt to slow metastasis and increase survival times beyond those of amputation or tumor removal alone.
With amputation and no additional treatment, the median survival time is about three months. The life expectancy of a dog with a properly identified and treated osteosarcoma varies greatly, but can approach a year or longer.
What is median survival time? When statistically evaluating a group, there are several methods of evaluating the central tendency of the population. The median is the value at which 50% of the group falls above and 50% of the group falls below. When evaluating median survival times, you are seeing a 50% chance of surviving longer than the median and a 50% chance of surviving less than the median.
Chemotherapy as a follow-up treatment increases the median life expectancy to about one year, according to most published studies. By two years 10-20% of the dogs who have received chemotherapy appear to be free of cancer.
It’s important to note, however, that chemotherapy hasn’t been shown to be very effective in treating osteosarcoma when there are visible signs of spread.
The drugs carboplatin, cisplatin and doxorubicin (Adriamycin) are part of a typical after surgery osteosarcoma chemotherapy protocol. The most successful have been carboplatin and cisplatin, the more expensive carboplatin being safer and easier to administer. Implantable cisplatin, used to treat dogs with osteosarcoma, has shown encouraging results.
Cisplatin is given intravenously every three to four weeks for three treatments. Note: less than three treatments will not extend survival time. The median survival time is 400 days. Survival at one year is 30% – 60%. Survival at two years is 7% – 21%. If your dog has pre-existing kidney disease, this is not your option. Cisplatin is toxic to the kidneys.
Carboplatin, substantially more expensive than cisplatin, is not toxic to the kidneys. Survival stats are similar to cisplatin. Also given intravenously every three to four weeks, this drug requires four treatments.
Doxorubicin (Adriamycin) is given IV every two weeks for five treatments, median survival time is 365 days with 10% still living at two years. This drug is heart toxic and should not be given to dogs with reduced heart contracting ability. An ultrasound exam is required before using.
Carboplatin and Doxorubicin given in combination intravenously, every three weeks for four treatments, see 48% of the dogs surviving at one year and 30% at two years.
While appendicular OSA (osteosarcoma of the limbs) is most common, osteosarcoma can develop anywhere there is bone. Axial osteosarcoma (osteosarcoma originating in bones other than limbs) commonly affects the upper and lower jaw. While large males outnumber females for appendicular OSA, the axial form tends to victimize smaller, middle-aged females to outnumber the males 2:1.
Axial osteosarcomas are more insidious than OSA in the limbs. Growing more slowly, they can exist for as long as two years before being formally diagnosed. Rib osteosarcomas, however, tend to be more aggressive than other axial osteosarcomas.
Treatment for both axial and appendicular (limb) osteosarcoma are similar, surgery followed by chemotherapy. Osteosarcoma of the lower jaw is the exception. Due to the slower growth of the axial tumor and the problematic removal of the jaw bone, totally or in part, without substantially affecting function, a 71% survival rate of one year or longer, has been reported with no chemotherapy whatsoever.
After your pet has a treatment, expect 1 to 2 days of lethargy and nausea. This can be greatly helped with a strong anti-nausea drug, like Zofran®. which is commonly used in chemotherapy patients. Side effects are more intense if a combination of drugs is used. But usually, your dog is back to normal by the third day after treatment. Essentially, you are trading eight days of sickness for six to twelve months of quality life.
Most dogs tolerate chemotherapy well, experiencing few side effects. You don’t have to worry about hair loss. But in some dogs, side effects can include vomiting and diarrhea or infection due to decreased white blood cells. If your dog experiences vomiting to where he or she cannot hold down water or ongoing diarrhea, or an infection, it is imperative that you seek veterinary care right away.
Trouble, the Pitbull, is considered a long term survivor.
Eisen, a German Shepherd, another long term survivor, Eisen’s owner did not opt for chemotherapy.
Canine Osteosarcoma Holistic Options for Canine Osteosarcoma
Holistic options for dog bone cancer, or for any cancer, include dietary changes, immune boosters, enzyme therapy, nutritional supplementation, and toxin removal from your dog’s environment. These will be handled separately.
Alternative Treatment For Dog Bone Cancer Curative Intent
Alternative treatment options hoping to slow or eliminate the primary tumor, and slow or prevent metastasis of osteosarcoma, include the drug Neoplasene which targets cancer cells and metastasis, angiogenesis supplement Vascustatin which inhibits blood flow to tumors, Radiation Hormesis (the use of natural occurring, on site low level radiation to kill cancer cells), The Emotion Code which releases emotions trapped in an individual’s energy field, and of course, positive thoughts and lots of love.
Supportive help takes the form of light and color energy (for lymphatic drainage, pain management, tumor shrinkage, avoiding radiation burns, rebalancing and recuperation), and scalar energy, also known as zero point energy which employs the concepts of quantum physics to bring cells back to their natural alignment.
Neoplasene to Kill Cancer Cells
Neoplasene is a relatively new herbal chemotherapy drug available for veterinary use. It’s derived from bloodroot (Sanguinaria canadensis), an herb with solid Native American history. Named bloodroot because its root “bleeds” a reddish sap, bloodroot has been used as a dye, an emetic (induces vomiting) and a wart and tumor treatment.
Bloodroot, not caustic by itself, has been incorporated into a caustic escharotic paste called Black Salve. Neoplasene, however, is neither a black salve nor is it whole bloodrood. Rather it is an isolate of the active ingredients of bloodroot called benzyl isoquinoline alkaloids, the primary alkaloid being sanguinarine.
Neoplasene stimulates the immune system, causing apoptosis or cell death, a self termination process that causes the cancer cells to die off. The dog’s stimulated immune system then removes the dying cancer cells via inflammation, while sparing normal, healthy cells.
The difference between most mainstream chemotherapy treatments and neoplasene is: neoplasene, at recommended doses, is not toxic to normal, healthy cells, but it is very toxic to cancer cells. Moreover, according to current reports, unlike most conventional chemo treatments, Neoplasene works on any type of cancer cell.
Vascustatin to Starve Tumors
Recruitment of new blood vessels plays a crucial role in tumor survival and growth. When you cut off the blood supply, you starve a tumor.
Vascustatin contains proteoglycan extract (PMG), derived from Bindweed (Convolvulus arvensis), a commonly found weed. It has demonstrated powerful angiogenesis inhibiting properties in a dose-dependent way, testing 100 times stronger than shark cartilage.
Vascustatin has even been reported to help the effectiveness of mainstream chemotherapy.
This supplement can be purchased online.
The general dose for:
- a small dog is one capsule twice daily
- a medium-size dog – two caps twice daily
- a large dog - three capsules twice daily
In fast growing tumors, like osteosarcoma, double the doses until remission occurs.
Dosages are according to Dr. Joe Demers, DVM, CVA, CVH, in his article “A Holistic Approach for the Treatment of Cancer.”
Always check with your vet before dosing your dog.
Natural Low Level Radiation Kills Cancer Cells
Since radiation of any kind, is a controversial topic, I suggest that you watch the videos below and also click on the links in this section. I can personally tell you that the radioactive stones referred to in the clips absolutely work. They made a huge difference in the size of Nikki’s tumor.
After taping the stones in place, according to protocol, areas in the site began to open and drain in a matter of days. In less than two weeks, Nikki’s tumor went from the size of a small beach ball to less than the size of a tennis ball.
I personally use the low level radiation “water stones” daily. In fact, I have two of them since it takes eight hours to irradiate about a gallon of water and I don’t want to be without it. I use the irradiated water for just about everything from drinking water, to making coffee, to placing it in my pets’ water bowls.
Night Hawk Minerals, the company providing the stones, claims that drinking the water clears fungus from the body. I have a friend who does dark field microscopy and plans to do some blood work after drinking the water. Until I have the results, I can tell you, anecdotally, that I haven’t had a cold or a breathing allergy problem since I began drinking the water myself. Living in humid Florida, this is an amazing statement for me.
I was originally directed to the Night Hawk Minerals site after a friend told me her friend used the “eye stones” and her cataracts disappeared. If your dog has canine osteosarcoma, natural, low level radiation is well worth checking out. I am not economically affiliated with this company in an way. It’s a small company that is sincerely looking to help people with various types of chronic illnesses and has had much success with all types of cancers.
This video is long, but contain a tremendous amount of information relative to cancer.
Two interesting articles on radiation:
- Radiation Hormesis in Humans Exposed to Low Level Ionizing Radiation
- Afraid of Radiation? Low Doses are Good for You
Releasing the Trapped Emotions that are Causing the Disease
There are times during the life of any living being when an emotion is experienced so strongly that it becomes trapped in the body’s energy field. These trapped emotions can range from feelings of abandonment, to feeling betrayed, lost, discouraged, feeling taken for granted, insecure… all the way to, interestingly, feeling so overjoyed about something that a “ball” of energy gets stuck disrupt the flow of natural energy.
Not only do these trapped emotions, predispose behavior and reactions, they can be the underlying cause of chronic minor aches and pains, personality quirks, an inability to accomplish something, say, lose excess weight, or find a better paying job, but they also can be the underlying factor in serious, life-threatening diseases.
The concept of trapped emotions is based on the following scientifically provable concepts:
- We, as life forms, are pure energy.
- Everything in our universe, is pure energy vibrating in their own energy fields: the house you live in, the wall, the furniture, the paintings on the walls, the car you drive are pure energy.
- Thoughts are pure energy.
- Emotions are pure energy.
- All energy exists in a sea of energy, each energy field influencing every other. The closer one is to a particular energy, the more one is influenced by it.
- All living forms are tuned to the truths of the universe. As life forms, one subconsciously “knows” what energy is nurturing to their own energy and what is destructive.
- By tapping into the subconscious knowledge of a living being we can bring into consciousness what they know will make them stronger or weaker, healthier or sicker. We can even find out what made them ill in the first place.
How can this help your dog?
By clearing your pet’s trapped emotions, pain can be eased, overall health can improve, and many times, tumors shrink, a disease process slows, or stops altogether. You can “tune in” to your pet’s subconscious to “talk” to your dog. You can ask questions such as:
“Is there a trapped emotion contributing to your disease?”
“Is this supplement good for you? Will you feel better if I give you this supplement at this time? Will it be better later in the day?”
“Is amputation the best option for you at this time?”
“Will chemotherapy give you the best odds for survival?”
“Do you want to go for a walk now?”
The possibilities are endless. Once you are able to ascertain your own body’s “yes” and “no” indicators through simple muscle testing, also known as kinesiology, you can communicate with your dog’s subconscious to get very real answers.
Using this valuable tool, I was able to radically shrink Nikki’s tumor and control his pain.
See below videos under Zero Point Energy for an visual understanding of “everything” as energy.
See the Categoies: Energy Healing for more on The Emotion Code.
Additionally see: Categories Nikki’s Story and Kinesiology.
Color Therapy to Balance the Body
I have seen miracles over the many years I have worked with Spectro-Chrome Therapy as outlined by Darius Dinshah in Let There Be Light: Practical Manual for Spectro-Chrome Therapy, a book that has several hundred protocols.
Starting with A for Abortion (preventing) through Y for Yellow Fever, it includes colors to shrink Tumors (orange, indigo), colors to ease Pain (blue, indigo, sometimes purple), stimulate Lymphatic drainage (yellow), increase energy, a color to prevent Radiation Burns (Red), and help in Recuperation (orange), all important in the quality of life for a dog with cancer.
Besides help for Nikki in this incarnation, in his last life, the purple lens regenerated his heart energy after he collapsed with tachycardia at the age of fifteen. He stayed under the purple lens for nine days, only moving with my help to go outside to relieve himself. Each day he grew stronger and stronger. After day nine, he never had another heart issue and lived over seventeen years.
I have seen a cat’s abscess come to a head and drain in 45 minutes using the indigo lens. We have countered life-threatening shock and many other pressing situations.
The protocols utilize Roscolene Color filters, theatrical gels that are pre-assembled to come as close to Dinshah’s original glass filters as possible, and a light source. Your light source can be sunlight. Io balance my diabetic cat during a several week hurricane initiated electrical outage, I stood a lens up against a lit flashlight. A theatrical boot (can) light, however is your best option and the lenses are cut into 6 ½” squares to fit the inserts.
Why does Spectro-Chrome work? There is no simple explanation, but make no mistake, it does work. Theories run from John Ott’s “mal-illumination” concept, which simply put: if you aren’t getting the right amount or quality of light, supplying it resolves your problems. Other ideas include chakra rebalancing. Since each chakra is identified with a specific color, re-energizing or calming a chakra rebalances the subtle energy flow.
Whole bodily systems, from endocrine to the nervous systems, seem to realign with color, as do individual organs (the liver radiates the equivalent of red; the spleen, green, and so on).
The truth, I’m sure, lies, in part, in the many theories expounded. But my personal favorite is Dinshaw’s own Frequency Modulation of Disorder which seems to cover it all: “Each element has a vibrational frequency finger print. The vibration and harmonics of the molecular balances in the system are out of phase with one another. Matter is frozen light. The colors are the perceived frequencies of light. Giving the proper color frequencies puts the molecular elements into harmonic resonance with the total system of integrated frequencies.”
Since the proper selection of Roscolene filters is important, the Dinshah Society recommends purchasing from Products On Demand (203) 322-1774. The full set of filters plus light kit is very reasonable (about $70).
Zero Point Energy to Realign the Cells
Scalar or zero point energy wands and medallions can help with lymphatic drainage and the overall feeling of well-being. But Nikki was not comfortable when I tried to use a technique to break up his tumor with the wand (I think he felt the energy too intensely), but he loved his Iyashi medallion. The Iyashi company’s wand is fantastic for healing injuries, arthritis, and relieving acute swelling and pain. But for Nik, I feel that using the low level radiation stones created enough activity in the tumor area.
This video will introduce you to scalar (zero point) energy.