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Low cost Heartworm Treatment – Yes we can!

Posted 03.09.17 by Audrey Parker

Heartworm infection in dogs is a given in our area without consistent heartworm preventive medication administration.  Each year we diagnose well over 100 cases of heartworms in dogs and a handful in cats too.  Although heartworm cases occur in cats, most cases are in dogs so we’ll confine our comments today to dogs.  Also, sadly there is no current treatment available for cats.

The only approved treatment for canine heartworm disease is a 3 injection series of a drug called melarsomine dihydrochloride (Immiticide).  When we analyzed the data, we found that not all dogs diagnosed with heartworms went on to have the recommended curative treatment.  And we didn’t like that!  While this drug is very expensive and we don’t have control of that, we can control what pet owners pay for it and we are proud to be a low cost heartworm treatment center.   All of our locations provide this pricing which should be as inexpensive as pet owners can find.  Why?  Because we want all dogs to have access to this life saving treatment.  It’s that simple.

It is important to note that the American Heartworm Society specifically recommends the 3 injections series as the only approved heartworm treatment.  There is also recent evidence that other treatments including the “soft kill” treatment are not actually effective and thus are specifically not recommended.  As it turns out, the “soft kill” protocol is proving to cause some dogs to test “false negative”.  False negative means the patient tests negative for heartworms but, the test is false meaning the heartworms are still in the heart causing damage.

 

David H. Wright

The Pet Hospitals

 

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