Chemotherapeutic drugs target dividing cells by interfering with processes in the cell cycle. They are transported in the bloodstream so that they can affect cancer cells within the body. During your appointment at the Animal Cancer Centre, our clinicians can discuss with you and your veterinarian about the most suitable chemotherapeutic drugs and the appropriate protocol for your pet.
WHAT TO EXPECT ON CHEMOTHERAPY TREATMENT DAYS
Thank you for choosing the Animal Cancer Center of the Ontario Veterinary College Health Sciences Centre (OVC HSC).
You should arrive for your appointment a few minutes early and sign in with the front desk staff at the Animal Cancer Centre. You will then meet with a member of the oncology team to discuss symptoms and any side effects that your pet may have experienced since their last visit. Please discuss all questions or concerns you have and then leave your pet in our capable hands. (Enjoy some free time!!)
Your pet will first be weighed and then will undergo an initial physical exam, including body temperature, pulse and respiration rate.
A small amount of blood will be drawn for a complete blood count (CBC). A CBC looks at your pet’s red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets. Since both cancer and chemotherapy affect these cells, chemotherapy can only be administered if these numbers fall within a safe range.
Your pet will undergo a complete examination by a veterinarian, including palpation of their lymph nodes and abdomen, listening to their heart and lungs, and general inspection of their overall condition.
Based on the results of your pet’s CBC and physical examination a decision will be made to determine the today’s course of treatment.
A prescription for the chemotherapy drug is written and submitted to the pharmacy. If required, an intravenous (IV) catheter is placed and the chemotherapy drug is administered, followed by removal of the catheter.
Return to the clinic and meet with a member of the oncology team to discuss side effects of today’s drug. We will review any medications to go home and arrange the next appointment.