Thursday, November 17, 2011

This lost Beagle named Dukie (or Pookie as her microchip was registered) was brought into Sylvan Veterinary Hospital this morning.  Luckily Dukie had a microchip making it possible for her to be reunited with her owner Melanie in less than 12 hours!!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

History of laser light therapy and how it works

In 1916, Albert Einstein first postulated the theory of laser light in an assumption necessary to support his theory of Relativity.  He corrected proposed that when protons collide with an atom under specific conditions they would emit light of uniform energy (wavelength).

It wasn’t until some 40 years later that technology could finally produce what Einstein predicted and the first laser was built.  

In 1967 Dr. Endre Mester, an Hungarian oncologist, wanted to find out if laser light could cause cancer.  His simple experiment took 2 groups of mice, shaving the hair off their backs, and exposing one of the groups to laser light.   To his surprise, the laser group did not develop cancer but rather grew their hair back much more quickly and thus was the first discovery that laser light stimulated cell growth and repair.  

Dr. Mester published his findings in a Hungarian medical journal instead of an international forum and therefore his findings missed most of the world.  Laser therapy for treatment of pain and healing began to growth in Eastern Europe (Russia, China) during the 1970’s. Laser treatment moved into western Europe in the 1980’s and finally into the west in the 1990’s.   With preponderance of scientific evidence, laser therapy is now an FDA approved treatment for pain relief, wound healing, and inflammation. 

What makes laser light unique?
There are three properties that make lased light unique.  First, a laser produces light on only one wavelength or color (Monochromatic).  Second, lased light is coherent, meaning that each photon of light (wave) moves in step or phase with all the other photons being emitted.  Third, the light beam is very tight and concentrated (collimated).  That is the beam stays relatively the same size at 10 yds  vrs. 50 yrs, unlike a flash light beam that gets very wide quickly.  

Numerous Scientific studies over the last decade have demonstrated that optimum cell simulation occurs at specific wavelengths, thus maximizing therapeutic laser light effect on pain relief and healing. 

The effects of laser light therapy in cells and the body:
At present, laser therapy is being used worldwide, and has become routinely used in the treatment of pain relief, wound healing, and as a anti-inflammatory mediator. 

The goal of laser therapy is provide pets with relief of pain and swelling, as a local anti-inflammatory, and as an enhanced method of healing wounds and injuries.
  • Stabilization of the cellular membrane
  • An increase of ATP (universal cell fuel) production to power cell repair and growth
  • Increased beta-endorphins, reducing pain
  • Reduced hypersensitivity (down-regulates pain nerves)
  • Repairs of nerve damage
  • Increased tissue repair through increased phagocytosis (removal of non-viable cells and wound debris), growth factor secretion and collagen synthesis
  • Vasodilation increasing oxygen and nutrient transport to damaged cells
  • Acceleration of beneficial leukocyte activity enhancing removal of non-viable cellular materials allowing for rapid cell repair
  • Increased Prostaglandin synthesis (PG12) providing additional vasodilation and anti-inflammatory action
  • Enhanced lymphocyte response
  • Increased angiogenesis (increased production of blood capillaries and lymphathics)
  • Enhanced superoxide dismutase levels which contributes to the anti-inflammatory response
  • Decreased C-reactive protein, an inflammatory mediator

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month

Did you know?
-Cancer accounts for nearly 50% of all disease-related pet deaths each year
-One in four dogs die of cancer.
-Approximately 1 in 4 dogs develops a tumor of some kind during his lifetime.
-Just like in humans, cancer can occur in any part of your dog’s body.

Are you aware that November is Pet Cancer Awareness Month? Run your hands over your pet and feel for any unusual lumps or bumps. If you feel something new or unusual, let's take a look at it. Dogs and cats can get benign lumps such as lipomas and sebaceous cysts, but they can also get much more serious tumors, like mast cell tumors, melanomas, squamous cell carcinomas, and many others. Many of these can be diagnosed with a simple in-office procedure involving a needle aspirate and then a microscopic exam of the cells obtained. A fine needle aspirate is generally less painful than a vaccination, so don't hesitate to get that lump checked out. The importance of annual check-ups regardless of the age of your pet is critical in the prevention of cancer. 

Here are the top 10 early warning signs of pet cancer listed out by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

1. Abnormal swellings that persist or continue to grow
2. Sores that do not heal
3. Weight loss
4. Loss of appetite
5. Bleeding or discharge from any body opening
6. Offensive odor
7. Difficulty eating or swallowing
8. Hesitation to exercise or loss of stamina
9. Persistent lameness or stiffness
10. Difficulty breathing, urinating or defecating

Better to be safe than sorry, and much better to catch something sooner rather than later!

Monday, November 14, 2011


On July 15th 2011 Lefty, a 8 weeks old mixed was presented to Sylvan Veterinary Hospital because he was attacked by a bigger dog, biting off his 5th digit of his front paw.  OUCH!!

Lefty was given some medication for pain and the wound was cleaned immediately.  An X-ray showed that his was had been chewed off at the second phalanx. 
Due to the extensive tissue damage and contamination surgical repair was delayed until infection was controlled.  After flushing and cleaning the wound thoroughly, Sugar was applied to the wound and paw bandaged to kill infection and reduce tissue swelling.  He was also started on a Class IV laser therapy program to speed healing and help control pain from his injury.   

 We knew was going to be a long recovery period, lots of care and patient but Lefty’s owners Geri, had a strong commitment with her pet.

Bandages were changed every other day, initially and LASER therapy was started on the third day, continuing every other day for a total of six treatments.
Lefty’s attitude improved every day as we as his wound; less pain, inflammation and more healing. 
After 8 days the improvement was noticeable;
Two weeks later the wound was 90% healed.
After 4 weeks, Lefty’s wound had healed remarkably without surgery.  He was pain free and well equipped to continue through his playful puppyhood.  

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Welcome Dr. Ricardo Rojas Rivas!

We are proud to introduce Dr. Ricardo Rojas Rivas as the newest member of our team of skilled Veterinarians.  Dr. Rojas completed his education in Costa Rica before moving here where he completed a demanding program to obtain his license in the United States.  “It is important for me to educate our pet owners in preventative medical care that will allow their pet’s to live a longer and healthier life.” Dr. Rojas is involved in many service groups including Search and Rescue, Dogs for the Blind and Police Dogs. Please join us in welcoming Dr. Rojas!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

National Senior Pet Month

November is Senior Pet Month. Do you have an older cat or dog sharing your home? If so, you know the joys of pets who might have less spunk but more soul. Here are five reasons to love a senior pet.

1. Distinguished look
You know how as we age, we are said to look distinguished? The same is true for our pets. I think senior cats project an air of peaceful dignity. And who can resist the precious gray muzzle of an older dog?
2. Laid-back lifestyle
For kittens and puppies, most any time is play time. Older pets, however, don’t need to release all that youthful energy. They are quieter and often content to just watch what’s going on in the living room or outside the window. Cuddling next to you takes precedence over most anything else.
3. Fewer demands
Older pets still need love and attention, but they don’t require babysitting like a frisky puppy or curious kitten. Some older pets have special medical needs, but after all they’ve given us through the years, it’s an honor to take care of them in return.
4. Wisdom of the ages
When I look into the eyes of a senior dog, I see a world of experience and wisdom. Older pets know what to expect, and are generally reliable and even. They require little training since they already know the rules.
5. They might be just like you!
As we get older, our needs and routines change. We might prefer quiet evenings at home rather than going out on the weekends. We still like to exercise, walk, or even run—but sometimes we go at a different pace. We might even nap in our chair occasionally. If you have a senior dog, you might find that he’s just like you!