Disease Modifying Osteoarthritic Drugs (DMOADs) | Companion Animal Veterinary Hospital

Disease Modifying Osteoarthritic Drugs (DMOADs)

Matt Young's picture
how DMOADs work

What are they?

There are a number of DMOADs available for use in dogs. The original product available was Cartrophen injections which contain pentosan polysulfate. Since then several generic version have come on the market and there are now several newer generation drugs such as Zydax Gen II and Synovan which have been enhanced to improve their beneficial effects. 

How do they Work?

These drugs work by preventing, reducing and in some cases restoring the damage to cartilage caused by osteoarthritis. 

DMOADs work by:

  • Stimulating cartilage producing cells to produce healthy cartilage
  • Slowing cartilage damage by destructive enzymes
  • Stimulate cells in the joint capsule to produce more lubricating joint fluid
  • Reducing swelling and blocking inflammation
  • Improving blood flow and nutrition to the bone and cartilage

How are they given?

DMOADs are given as weekly injections for 4 weeks under the skin. They are painless and there are very few if any side effects. DMOADs work best if given before the joints become too painful. Once the joints are painful alot of the arthritic changes are already irreversible.  

In dogs that are just a little stiff after laying down DMOADs can have a dramatic effect alone and people often reports that their dog "feels like a puppy again". 

If the arthritis is advanced we will generally still give the injections are they are beneficial but the improvement is not as marked as it is earlier in the course of the disease. 

The injections are generally repeated every 6 months. 

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