Pulsed electromagnetic field therapy a promising treatment for dogs with enlarged prostates
Researchers from the University of Bari, Italy have reportedly discovered an effective method of treating benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) in dogs that doesn't involve surgery or drugs.
Their study, published online in The Prostate and scheduled to appear in print in August, details their use of pulsed electromagnetic field therapy (PEMF) to treat dogs with enlarge prostates.
In the study, researchers used PEMF on 20 dogs for three weeks, providing treatments twice a day for five minutes each. After three weeks, they reported that prostate gland size decreased by an average of 57 percent over the course of the treatment. In addition to the observed efficacy, researchers said their study showed that PEMF does not negatively impact reproductive aspects such as libido, semen quality, or testosterone, as traditional forms of therapy for BPH are sometimes known to do.
"The results demonstrate the safety and efficacy of this therapy in reducing prostatic volume without negative impacts on libido or seminal parameters," researchers reported in their published study. "Although the mechanism of action of PEMF therapy is not completely clear, the results of this study show a possible improvement in blood flow, supporting the theory that BPH might be caused by blood flow impairment."
Because of its non-invasive nature, scientists reported that the use of PEMF even keeps dogs calm and relaxed throughout the process.
"Dogs are not stressed by the therapy. Since it's applied as if it were a belly rub, dogs accept the PEMF application as a relaxing moment with the owner," said Dr. Raffaella Leoci, the study's lead researcher, in a news release.
The treatment's safety and efficacy demonstrated in dogs suggests the potential for similar results in humans, but more research is needed to understand the precise mechanism of action for PEMF and anatomical differences between human and canine prostates, researchers said.
This article was provided by the American Animal Hospital Association.