Monday, May 18, 2015

Ziggy the Cardigan IVDD: We're In the Clinical Trial for Paralyzed Dogs!

When I last posted Ziggy had been accepted into the Clinical Trial for Paralyzed Dogs at Iowa State University.  After a bit of consideration, we decided to have Ziggy join the trial - more for the greater good than for any expected direct benefit to Ziggy.  Ziggy is now Dog #31 in the trial - and one of only two corgis so far in the trial.

Ziggy at drop off day last week 
with Dr. Hu and Brittany, "his" student for the week.

We've taken Ziggy for two of his four trial visits.  During each visit a number of tests are done to assess neurological function.  (Thanks to the team at the Clinical Trial for giving me this info to share.)  These tests include:

  • Neurological exam to assess neurological function
  • Treadmill gait recording which measures gait using sensors and cameras (if you go to the Clinical Trial's Facebook page you can see Ziggy on the treadmill.  It's not his favorite thing.)
  • Cystometry to measure bladder function
  • Electrodiagnositcs to assess spinal cord conduction
  • Urinalysis to check for UTI
  • Rehab therapy & evaluation

Ziggy on the treadmill.

On the first visit, Ziggy got an injection - well one injection at two different locations along the spine.  Since it's a clinical trial, we don't know if he received the placebo (control group) or the chondroitnase (treatment group).  We're pretty sure he got the placebo - but that's just because we're pessimistic when it comes to Ziggy.  We've learned to become pessimistic when it comes to Ziggy - it makes things less disappointing.

Even though we're convinced Ziggy is in the control group, we can't help but see "new" activity - he seems to be wagging/flagging his tail more, and paddling his hind legs harder.  But it's probably just wishful thinking.  

Ziggy has two more visits - one in August, and one in October(ish).  During the last visit, if he was in the control group, he will receive the chondroitnase.

So far, Ziggy has received reviews that he's a stellar patient.  The student who was in charge of Ziggy last week said he was the best patient they have.  And Ziggy is a patient, patient, kind dog, so I'm not surprised they like him!

Ziggy back at home after his first visit.
He and Blossom the cat missed each other.
His reverse mohawk is due thanks to site prep for the injection.

If you'd like to keep up with Ziggy and the Trial, I recommend visiting (and liking) their Facebook pages:

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