Part of VetDC’s Clinical Advisory Board Guest Blog series. This post comes from Kate Vickery, DVM, MS, DACVIM, at Hope Veterinary Specialists in Malvern, PA.
Medical Oncologist Dr. Kate Vickery attended veterinary school at the University of Pennsylvania and then went on to complete a three year combined Residency and Master’s Degree in Medical Oncology and Cancer Biology at the Flint Animal Cancer Center at Colorado State University. At Hope Veterinary Specialists she is joined by fellow colleagues, Dr. Craig Clifford, Medical Oncologist, and Dr. Siobhan Haney, Radiation Oncologist. Together they make up the Oncology Service which provides cancer treatment for pet dogs and cats using: chemotherapy, radiation (traditional and Cyberknife), immunotherapy, and clinical trials. Hope Veterinary Specialists is a multi-disciplinary, specialty referral hospital in the suburbs of Philadelphia. In addition to Medical and Radiation Oncology, Hope Veterinary Specialists specialty services including: Internal Medicine, Surgery, Cardiology, Neurology, Dermatology, Dentistry, Anesthesiology, Emergency/Critical Care, and Acupuncture.
“We place strong emphasis on patient care and supporting the quality of life for our patients,” says Dr. Vickery. “After 10 years in practice I decided to take this to the next level and obtained certification in veterinary acupuncture from the world renowned, Chi Institute, under guidance of Dr. Huisheng Xie, one of the world’s leading experts in Veterinary Acupuncture.”
Acupuncture is a type of Traditional Chinese Medicine, now well supported by medical research, which involves the insertion of extremely thin needles through the skin at strategic points on the body to stimulate nerves, muscles and connective tissue. Acupuncture is an excellent adjunct to Western (Conventional) therapies as it has low risk of side effects and may help reduce the amount and side effects of Conventional treatments. A large volume of studies have indicated that acupuncture is helpful in supporting the human oncology patient, by reducing side effects of treatment including: fatigue, low blood cell counts and secondary infections, gastrointestinal upset, poor appetite. As an oncology specialist and a certified veterinary acupuncturist, Dr. Vickery strives to use a combination of both Conventional treatment to help fight the cancer and Acupuncture to help support the patient and the patient’s quality of life during their cancer treatments. This well rounded combination treatment plan is what she believes is giving her very best to each patient she treats.