The Latest News in Veterinary Medicine
AAVMC Conference Registration Now Open
September 20, 2011–Registration for the 2012 Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges (AAVMC, aavmc.org) Annual Conference is now available. The conference will be held Wednesday, March 7, to Sunday, March 11, at the Westin Alexandria in Alexandria, Virginia. Featured sessions include a leadership workshop and sessions on outsourcing of clinical education, challenges involved in food supply academic veterinary medicine, and the results of the AAVMC/AVMA Climate Survey, which evaluated how accepting academia is of students from underrepresented races, cultures, and lifestyles. To register online for the conference, go to registration123.com/AAVMC/2012_ANN_CONF/.
New Pet Food for Hyperthyroid Cats
August 29, 2011–Hill’s Pet Nutrition (hillsvet.com) has launched Hill’s Prescription Diet y/d Feline Thyroid Health, a daily, low iodine nutrition solution designed to manage hyperthyroidism in cats, and clinically proven to improve thyroid health in 3 weeks. To read about a success story of a cat receiving this food, visit multivu.com/mnr/51765-hills-pet-nutrition-launches-new-pet-food-for-hyperthyroid-cats. For more information on the product, go to the Hill’s webpage.
Veterinary Internet Content Exchange Online
September 10, 2011–In 2010, the North American Veterinary Medical Education Consortium (NAVMEC, aavmc.org/Veterinary-Educators/NAVMEC.aspx), spearheaded by the AAVMC, began a comprehensive effort to ensure that veterinary medical education meets society, veterinary profession, and veterinary students needs. The executive summary of this effort can be found at aavmc.org/NAVMEC/NAVMEC-Media.aspx. One of the 6 recommendations was to “increase sharing of educational resources among veterinary medical schools and colleges.” To support this effort, the Veterinary Internet Content Exchange (VetICE) was developed. This program provides faculty and students access to high-quality, engaging Internet-based learning materials and courses, authored by leading faculty in a variety of animal health disciplines. For more information, visit VetICE.net.
Online Continuing Education Behavior Course
September 2011–Virbac Animal Health (virbacvet.com) has released the first chapter of their new Behavior University online series. Understanding Fear, Anxiety, and Stress in Dogs and Cats is an introductory course on animal behavior aimed to help veterinarians and their staff recognize the body language of, and better understand fear, anxiety, and stress in, dogs and cats. Virbac’s Behavior University is an online resource that offers up-to-date technical and treatment information about behavioral issues. The courses can help identify and address solutions to behavior problems. Participants receive 1 hour of CE credit for successfully completing each chapter and the course is free of charge. To find out more, visit virbacuniversity.com/behavior.
Heartworm Prevention Video from AHS
September 16, 2011–The American Heartworm Society (AHS) has released a new tool to help veterinarians promote awareness for heartworm prevention and management. The video, entitled Is Your Pet Protected?, is designed to educate and remind pet owners and veterinarians about AHS recommendations to test pets for heartworm each year and give prevention year-round. “The more we can encourage heartworm monitoring and prevention, the more successful our efforts will be to continue to raise disease awareness among practitioners and pet owners,” said AHS President Wallace Graham, DVM. The video is available to view in the Media Room at heartwormsociety.org.
New Fast-Acting Tick & Flea Product Launched
August 31, 2011–The FDA has recently approved Norvartis Animal Health US, Inc’s (ah.norvartis.us) Parastar Plus, a dual-action tick and flea adulticide that combines fipronil with cyphenothrin, a type II pyrethroid. Parastar Plus starts killing ticks and fleas in as little as 1 hour and is approved for 30-day control of fleas, chewing lice, mites that cause sarcoptic mange, and ticks that may carry tick-borne disease. It is administered topically and approved for use in dogs and puppies 12 weeks of age and older. Parastar Plus will be offered exclusively through veterinarians but is not yet registered in all states; to learn more about availability in your state, visit parastarpluspet.com.
Identifying GI Issues with an App
September 6, 2011–Veterinary staff members now have a new tool available to help them identify gastrointestinal (GI) issues. Accessible in the medical category in the Apple App Store, the Purina Veterinary Diets Diagnostic App for iPhone and iPad assists veterinarians in diagnosing GI problems in dogs and cats. This tool uses algorithms to help localize the GI condition, taking into consideration history, physical examination, and diagnostic results. Clinical signs covered by the app include anorexia, constipation, diarrhea, flatulence, regurgitation, vomiting, and weight loss. For more information, visit the App Store or go to PurinaVeterinaryDiets.com to access the application.
New Product Guarantee for FRONTLINE Plus
August 29, 2011–Merial (merial.com) is launching a guarantee offered only through participating veterinarians nationwide: the Satisfaction Plus Guarantee. This guarantee is intended to demonstrate Merial’s confidence in the proven efficacy of FRONTLINE Plus, which kills adult fleas, their eggs and larvae, and ticks. As a part of the Satisfaction Plus Guarantee, pet owners will have access to specially-trained Merial technicians who can offer advice on several aspects of flea and tick control, such as overall product use, efficacy, and instruction on proper application. If the technician cannot solve the pet owner’s flea and tick problem, Merial will provide a 1-time, in-home inspection and treatment, if necessary, by a Terminix certified professional, provided FRONTLINE Plus was purchased from a veterinarian and used for 3 consecutive months on all pets in the household. For full details and eligibility requirements, visit CompleteKiller.com.
Heartworm Treatment Immiticide Unavailable
August 11, 2011–Immiticide (merial.com), the only adulticide available to treat heartworm in dogs, will be unavailable for an unknown amount of time. The American Heartworm Society (AHS) has put together a detailed management plan for veterinarians, which is available on their website, heartwormsociety.org. The goals of the interim plan include:
- Reduce potential pathology from the infection.
- Maintain the health of the heartworm-positive dog until it can be appropriately treated.
- Prevent additional heartworm infection of the dog.
The objective of this plan is not to eliminate infection, but to manage patients in the best possible way until Immiticide is available.
Atopica for Cats MODIFIED Approved by FDA
August 12, 2011–Novartis Animal Health US, Inc (ah.norvartis.us) has received FDA approval for Atopica for Cats MODIFIED, the first treatment specifically approved for chronic feline allergic dermatitis and the only nonsteroid therapy for this disease. This disease, one of the most common reasons pet owners present their cats to a veterinarian, can be difficult to diagnose and manage. Atopica for Cats is proven to significantly relieve itching and reduce skin lesions, with improvement seen within a few weeks. It comes in an easy-to-dose oral solution. The U.S. launch of Atopica for Cats will begin in late 2011 and continue through 2012.