Margaret C. Saiki, D.V.M.,
Over 20 Years of Experience!
Former Medical Director
of major emergency clinic
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Series Pain Management in dogs: Metacam

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Series on Chronic Arthritis Pain in Dogs: Metacam
The first line of medication I use in my mobile veterinary practice for chronic pain associated with arthritis is Metacam (Meloxicam). Metacam  is a NSAID (Non Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs). NSAIDs play an important role in the pain management pyramid for dogs. They are used provided the patient does not have other disease processes that would preclude their use. This is why a monitoring blood work is essential when Metacam is used on a chronic basis.
Metacam is a liquid that is easily given orally only once a day and can be mixed in food. My experience with compliance is excellent for Dogs don’t seem to object to the taste. Moreover because it is a liquid the dosage can be reduced incrementally in order to find the lowest dose needed to provide pain relief. This helps decrease the potential for side effects.
Nancy……"Dr. Saiki helped us get at least one more year of good life with our dog. We took our dog to other vets and they said she would not function with such bad arthritis and have to be put down. Dr. Saiki prescribed METACAM which is an oral medication for the treatment of osteoarthritis and it worked like magic, over night! It is easy to administer and gave our dog her mobility back and no pain. Thank You Dr. Saiki. Not to mention as others have said about her compassion, knowledge and her mobile service can't be beat."
The NSAIDs work by way of blocking prostaglandin activity. Prostaglandins are mediators produced by the cells of the body which are then involved in inflammation, pain, fever and the protection from ulcers in the stomach from gastric acids. Prostaglandins are produced by the enzyme called cyclooxygenase (COX). There are two COX enzymes, COX-1 and COX-2 both of which produce prostaglandins which have differing functions.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) block the COX enzymes and reduce prostaglandins throughout the body. As a consequence, ongoing inflammation, pain, and fever are reduced. Since the prostaglandins that protect the stomach and support platelets and blood clotting also are reduced, NSAIDs can cause ulcers in the stomach and promote bleeding. Only COX-1 produces prostaglandins that support platelets and protect the stomach. How strongly they inhibit COX-1 and their tendency to cause ulcers and promote bleeding. Selective COX-2 inhibitors cause less bleeding and fewer ulcers than other NSAIDs. Meloxicam has been shown, especially at its low therapeutic dose, selectively to inhibit COX-2 over COX-1.
Revist my Blog for more on the Athritis Pain Management Pyramid


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