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  Home > Current Clinical Trials > Small Animal Surgery
 

Small Animal Surgery

CVMVMC2 - image - 690x350 - lake dog

Welcome to the Small Animal Surgery Studies Page!

If you would like more information about a study, or think you would like to enroll your pet, contact the person listed under the study. You may also Contact Us at the CIC.

Currently open studies:
1. A randomized, placebo-controlled trial to investigate the safety and efficacy or an oral nutraceutical for the treatment of arthritis in client-owned dogs

2. Evaluation of Allogeneic Stem Cells as an Adjuvant Therapy for Osteoarthritis

3. Evaluation of Gabapentin in the Post-Operative Management of Pain following TPLO Surgery in Dogs 

A randomized, placebo-controlled trial to investigate the safety and efficacy or an oral nutraceutical for the treatment of arthritis in client-owned dogs

Current Status: Open and enrolling
Principal Investigator: Michael Conzemius, DVM, PhD, DACVS
Contact: Sara Pracht, study technician, at 612-626-3574, prach011@umn.edu

Arthritis is a common problem in the dog and often decreases quality of life. One treatment option often recommended by veterinarians for treating the signs of arthritis is a food supplement called a nutraceutical. The purpose of this study is to test if a new nutraceutical is safe and effective for the treatment of arthritis in the dog. Nutraceuticals are not considered drugs by the FDA and are generally felt to be safe. This is a three group, placebo-controlled study, meaning your dog could receive placebo, a control nutraceutical (Dasuquin®) or the new nutraceutical. The study is also double-blind, meaning neither the owner nor Dr. Conzemius will know which treatment a dog is on until the conclusion of the study.

We are looking for dogs with:

  • obvious lameness and pain
  • not on any pain medications or other nutraceuticals (such as steroids, glucosamine/chondroitin, certain foods)

There are several visits to the study:

  • Enrollment - exam, radiographs to confirm osteoarthritis (OA), blood sampling, and fitting with an accelerometer on a special collar. The dog will wear this collar throughout the study.
  • Day 7 - Recheck to collect accelerometer data and to receive study treatment (placebo, Dasuquin or new nutraceutical). Owners will give tablets at home.
  • Day 30 - Visit to the VMC for exam, complete pain inventory and for us to collect accelerometer data. Study treatment will be refilled.
  • Day 60 - Visit to the VMC for exam, complete pain inventory and for us to collect accelerometer data. Study treatment will be refilled.
  • Day 90 - Final visit to the VMC for exam, complete pain inventory and for us to collect accelerometer data. Owners return any unused tablets at this time.

This study covers costs of all procedures listed above, plus $300 at the conclusion.

If you are interested in participating or in referring a dog for this study, please contact Sara Pracht above.

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Evaluation of Allogeneic Stem Cells as an Adjuvant Therapy for Osteoarthritis

Current Status: Open and enrolling
Investigators:
Michael Conzemius, DVM, PhD, DACVS
Kristina Kiefer, DVM, PhD
Contact: Sara Pracht, study technician, at 612-626-3574, prach011@umn.edu

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a non-reversible disease in which the joint loses cartilage and begins to ossify (become bone-like). This causes pain and therefore lameness. Current therapies involve weight control, pain management and physical therapy. Allogeneic stem cell therapy is currently being explored as a possible treatment for this disease. This involves collection of stem cells from fat in normal dogs undergoing routine surgeries (such as spay or neuter). Because the cells come from a dog other than your pet, they are called allogeneic (non-self). These cells are capable of becoming many kinds of cells, and reduce inflammation. In theory, these stem cells can differentiate into cartilage. We suspect that allogeneic stem cell therapy will decrease inflammation of joints affected by OA and slow down arthritic progression.

We are looking for adult dogs that have been diagnosed with OA through physical examination, blood work, urinalysis, and radiographs (x-rays). There are two paths or arms in the study:

  1. If one limb is most clinically affected, dogs will be assigned to either a treatment group or a control group. This arm of the study uses injections into the affected joint under mild sedation. Dogs also receive gait analysis at each visit, where they will be leash-walked over a force plate to assess the severity of the lameness. At the 12 week visit, dogs will recieve radiographs to determine the severity of OA.
    • The treatment group will be treated with an allogeneic stem cell injection into the joint (IA) at enrollment and again at 6 weeks. No sedation is required for this injection. There is a final visit at 12 weeks.
    • The control group will recieve a placebo (saline) injection IA at enrollment and at 6 weeks. At the final 12 week visit, if the dog had the placebo injections, the dog will have the oppportunity to receive allogeneic stem cell therapy if the owner wishes.
       
  2. If multiple limbs are affected, dogs will be assigned to a treatment group or a control group. This arm of the study uses intravenous stem (IV) cell injections and an activity monitor which the dog wears to determine activity levels. At the 12 week visit, dogs will recieve radiographs to determine the severity of OA.
    • The treatment group will be treated with allogeneic stem cells (IV) at enrollment and again at 6 weeks. No sedation is required for this injection. There is a final visit at 12 weeks.
    • The control group will recieve a placebo (saline) injection IV at enrollment and at 6 weeks. At the final 12 week visit, if the dog had the placebo injections, the dog will have the oppportunity to receive allogeneic stem cell therapy if the owner wishes.
       

For more information, please contact Sara Pracht above.

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Evaluation of Gabapentin in the Post-Operative Management of Pain Following TPLO Surgery in Dogs
 

Current Status: Open and enrolling
Investigators:
Michael Conzemius, DVM, PhD, DACVS
Daniel Almeida, DVM, MS
Erin Wendt-Hornickle, DVM, DACVAA
Contact: Andrea Eckert, study technician, at 612-625-3157, aleckert@umn.edu

Managing pain after surgery continues to be of increasing importance in veterinary medicine. Gabapentin has been used for pain management during and after surgery.  Previous studies indicate that the frequency of dosing may be essential to maintaining a level of pain management but this has not been verified by clinical trials. This study will evaluate the effectiveness of gabapentin added to standard of care in post-operative pain management as compared to standard of care alone following TPLO (tiblial plateau leveling osteotomy) surgery in dogs.

We are looking for healthy adult dogs with a cranial cruciate ligament rupture in one leg scheduled for TPLO surgery at the Veterinary Medical Center (VMC). Dogs will weigh 33 lbs or more, with no signficant abnormalities on bloodwork and urinalysis. Patients will not have received steroids, gabapentin or tramadol for 3 days and no aspirin for 7 days prior to participation.

Dogs will be randomly chosen to receive either standard of care (carprofen and hydromorphone) alone or gabapentin plus standard of care. Medications will begin the night before surgery. We will perform computer-aided pressure platform stance analysis once before surgery and once per day for 3 days after surgery. Dogs will need to stay through this third day.

There is one final recheck at 14 days post-surgery.

Costs of the 3 day hospitalization in the VMC, carprofen, hydromorphone, gabapentin, and pressure stance analysis will be covered by the study. The costs of the presurgical exam, baseline blood work, radiographs and TPLO surgery will be paid by the owner. All owners will receive a $300 credit in addition to help offset these costs.

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