As veterinary care goes human grade, following the lead of human medicine, the veterinary medical field has experienced an explosion of new technologies and techniques that offer many innovative options for the care of animals. These improvements are allowing pets to live longer, more active lives, with less pain and better quality of life even when they are diagnosed with serious conditions. Here are just a few of the innovations that are changing the way veterinary care is being practiced and how you and I and our beloved pets benefit.
Orthopedic Surgery for Animals
Joint replacement surgery has improved the quality of life for people all over the world. Similar types of surgery are now becoming more common for dogs that have damaged joints from osteoarthritis or hip dysplasia. New joint designs and materials that have been successful for the treatment of humans are now being adapted to animal anatomy, providing animals with better mobility even when serious diseases affect their joint function.
Laser Therapy for Pets
Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation, shortened to “laser,” has been used for surgical procedures on humans for many years. Its ability to cut through tissue with less damage and bleeding has made it a standard tool as veterinary care goes human grade. Less powerful laser beams can also be used to stimulate tissues to enhance their healing ability, and this technique is beginning to be used in veterinary practice to help animals heal quickly from injuries and surgical procedures. The laser stimulates tissues to produce the proteins and enzymes that involved in the natural healing process.
Telemedicine Emerges as Veterinary Care Goes Human Grade
The idea of “telemedicine” is taking hold in society, as technology improves to provide better communications between medical professionals and people in remote areas of the world or those that cannot easily get to healthcare facilities. Now, as veterinary care goes human grade, this concept can also be extended to veterinary care allowing vets to view animals directly, assess their condition and recommend treatment options. Many vets are now able to look at a rash or ear infection directly through your smartphone, to provide basic care at a distance and with less expense.
3D Printing of Anatomical Devices and Prostheses
Another area of technology that is likely to be a boon to veterinary care is in the 3D printing of specialized devices that can be used to help animals that have been affected by serious disease or accidents. Artificial joints, heart valves and other intricate devices can be custom manufactured using 3D printing equipment.
Alternative Veterinary Medicine
Veterinary care goes human-grade with alternative treatments such as chiropractic care, acupuncture and hydrotherapy. These methods can offer help for painful physical conditions, orthopedic rehabilitation and neurological problems that are not fully addressed with conventional veterinary techniques. The alternative methods require additional training and are not yet widely available, but experts believe they will become a standard feature of veterinary care for dogs and cats.
Veterinary science has provided many advancements to help sick and injured animals. The field continues to develop new ways to provide care that is more effective and allows people to enjoy their animal companions for a longer lifetime. Additional improvements are likely to appear in the future as more and more veterinary care goes human grade. These developments, together with our natural remedies for dogs and cats, will contribute better care for the pets that you and I love so much.