Novartis and Hill's offer $25,000 for best arthritis management case


Competition focuses on multimodal treatment of canine osteoarthritis.

In war, it's best to attack an enemy on several fronts. And veterinarians who assault the pain of osteoarthritis in dogs know they're more likely to quell destructive pathology if they use a variety of treatments: Anti-inflammatory medications, weight loss, physical rehabilitation, chondroprotectants, and omega-3 fatty acids combined are more likely to be successful than any one of these strategies alone. What's more, pets who receive combination therapy often need lower doses of medication, which enhances patient safety and lowers the risk of adverse drug effects.

Now practitioners who use a multimodal approach to osteoarthritis treatment can win up to $25,000 in cash if their case study is selected as the winner of a competition recently announced by Novartis Animal Health and Hill's Pet Nutrition. Hill's and Novartis are calling for cases from general practitioners, boarded surgeons, and university researchers that involve the use of at least these elements:

• Deramaxx, an NSAID approved to control the pain and inflammation of canine osteoarthritis

• Hill's Prescription Diet j/d, an EPA-rich diet designed to help maintain healthy joints

• Adequan, a polysulfated glycosaminoglycan designed to protect cartilage.

Rehabilitation therapy, weight management, and other adjunct therapies may also be used. Cases will need to demonstrate measurable improvement in joint range of motion-the more robust the data, the better the case's chances in the competition, organizers say.

Selected cases will have a chance to win $5,000, $10,000, or $25,000 in cash. (To request a registration packet or learn more about the competition, call 877-437-2679.) And sure-$25,000 is a nice prize. But it's estimated that one in five dogs over the age of 7 suffer from osteoarthritis, so successful treatment of their achy joints makes them the true winners.

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