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Pancreas Support / Digestive Enhancer

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Pancreas Support / Digestive Enhancer
  • I took Callie's advice and connected with Nature's Pharmacy West regarding the Bobster's Chronic Pancreatic Insufficiency.  He is on Pancrease-V Powder for life.  My problem had been that twice the distributor was back ordered and I had to go out of town to pick some up even though I ordered a month ahead. 

    I phoned NPW and they were more than happy to spend the time to assure me that I was ordering the correct stuff:  Dogzymes Pancreas Support which I just received today.  The main ingredients are identical:  Lipase, Protease, Amylase which provides fat, protein and starch however the NPW formula also contains yucca, acidophulus plus a few other ingredients. 

    I like the idea that I can buy 8 ounces for $42, 1 pound for $76 and 2 pounds for $140...American. The two pound jar is meant to serve a large dog for six months.

    I also bought a Digestive Enhancer which is digestive bacteria, enzymes, probiotics and prebiotics.  It is just that extra little something to ehance the work being done by the Enzyme replacement. 

    They have a whole catalogue of items.  Obviously any problems need to go through the vet; just letting folks know that his is a great resource for all kinds of things....almost as good as Callie. Smile

     

  •  I'm glad you found a more reliable source for the enzymes; that's great!!! I only have one comment, and you may already know this, but the enzymes need to be from an animal source and not from plants in order to be effective for an EPI dog.  I guess you made certain that the NPW product contains animal enzymes?

  • jessies_mom

     I'm glad you found a more reliable source for the enzymes; that's great!!! I only have one comment, and you may already know this, but the enzymes need to be from an animal source and not from plants in order to be effective for an EPI dog.  I guess you made certain that the NPW product contains animal enzymes?

     

    Hmmm....thanks for the note!  As soon as the stuff arrived, I set the containers side by side and the listed ingredients are identical. The PANCREASE-V doesn't list an animal source either ... unless it is in the ingredients I listed above.  Confused  

    I always thought that PANCREASE-V was made with pig pancreas but I couldn't see it listed. So, then I figured the ingredients were chemical substitutes for animal enzymes thus the need for a presription. Bob's been on it for a year and a half with excellent results. 

    I just called Nature's Farmacy again and was assured that they have had excellent success with this product, but it does not contain animal enzymes. They are going to have their doctor put the explanation in writing for me. The person was great; she too wanted a better understanding of how the product works.  Likely that won't happen until Monday, but I will forward the info when I get it.  I will also call Toronto and ask about the other.

    I really hope this stuff works out.   I can't buy pig pancreas locally and I have always worried how the suppliers could keep up their access to it...especially when it has been back ordered twice in the last six months.  Thanks again for the note.

  • Update:  the Pancreas-V is derived from porcine pancreas...so pig pancreas.  It's not listed on the jar, but it is listed on the website.  So now to find out if that can be matched...

  •  Bruister; I'm sorry but I was mistaken;the enzymes have to be specifically for EPI rather than the way I explained it. Still, they have to come from the pancreas of pig or cattle;

    http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=2+1580&aid=331;

     Fortunately, treatment can easily be accomplished. Unfortunately, it is an expensive and lifelong proposition. Treatment involves replacing the dog's pancreatic enzymes with enzymes from other sources. Our only source of medications for these cases is products made through an expensive process, using freeze-dried and ground-up extracts of hog and cattle pancreases. These glands are harvested in meat packing plants and then processed solely for this purpose. They are formulated either into tablets or powder and go under such trade names as Viokase or Pancrezyme. They contain large quantities of the same naturally occurring digestive enzymes that are deficient in the affected pet. The tablets are given prior to a meal while the powder is usually mixed with food and allowed to set 30 minutes before feeding. Response to therapy is immediate and the animal will usually return to near normal health. Unfortunately, cost becomes the major hurdle in treating pancreatic insufficiency. An affected dog, for instance, will need $60-100 worth of medication every month. Research is underway to develop synthetic digestive enzymes, and hopefully, will lower the price of treating these patients.

    Since the deficiency is one of enzymes and is cured by the addition of the same enzymes back into the diet, many dog owners regretfully try other cures. There are many products, nutritional and otherwise, that advertise they contain natural enzymes which aid in digestion. Examples of these are K-ZYME, ProBalance, Prozyme, and so on. These really do contain real and natural enzymes and in normal dogs can be very useful nutritional supplements. However, they are not the enzymes associated with Pancreatic Insufficiency. This is a very specific disorder with specific enzymes needed to correct it. The general nutritional supplement will do no harm, but regretfully, they will do no good either.

     

  • Bruister
    I can't buy pig pancreas locally and I have always worried how the suppliers could keep up their access to it...especially when it has been back ordered twice in the last six months.  Thanks again for the note.

    Just another thot for you (and I'm completely just brain-storming here) -- Billy takes Armour Thyroid for his hypo-thyroid.  It is a porcine thyroid glandular.  Similar to what you're talking about -- but a different organ.  Armour has quit making it and I've bashed my head against the wall for months trying to find places that have it or a similar product. 

    FINALLY I have found it.  *rolling my eyes* -- at the compounding pharmacy about 2 blocks from my house!!!  Sheesh!!  The vet finally found a place in Denver (gee - let's say about 3500 miles away??) for $80 US for a 30 days supply (and add shipping to that).  But I got to talking to my other vet who recommended another compounding pharmacy (closer -- but they still wanted $75 -- but at least it would be somewhat local/mailable and not 4 days shipping).

    Finally I pulled my brain out of the cobwebs and thot "Gee why don't I try Pharmacy Specialists around the corner?"

    BINGO -- $60 a month PLUS it's actually compounded directly from porcine thyroid.  My holistic vet has been having "issues" with the Armour because it hasn't been consistent and most of the other compounding pharmacies were just breaking up a stock of Armour Thyroid and repackaging it in the number of "grain" I needed.  So this is a win/win all over.

    But you might check locally and see.  Now I know you're in Canada and that likely changes all of this-- but apparently there are huge differences between pharmacies as well. 

    Once upon a time ALL pharmacies compounded (ok you young folks -- think of Mr. Gower the pharmacist in "It's a Wonderful Life"???) but in recent years it's become quite a specialized field.

    Just thot it might be an avenue to check out in any event.

  • Hi, Callie, I have heard or maybe read the term compounded before, but I don't know what it means. Could you please explain.  

    I am also going to do some reading about human pancreas problems and see if there is any similarity. For example do humans have to have human pancreas enzymes to survive this situation.  If so...yikes...maybe too much info Smile.

    I am confident that we will be fine this time around but glad to be looking at all of this now as opposed to down the road when or if they quit making the Pan-V.

    Bob's due a check up soon so this time around I will have a whole new set of questions to ask. 



     

     

  • A "compounding" pharmacy MAKES the drug.  Like at one point a skin dr. wanted me to have a skin cream of pine tar mixed with a steroid -- and they took the ingredients the dr. wanted and made it for me.

    A compounding pharmacy will take the actual pancreatic material and 'make' capsules out of it.  ("make" the compound -- or measure it and make it into a pill)

  • Bruister
    I am also going to do some reading about human pancreas problems and see if there is any similarity. For example do humans have to have human pancreas enzymes to survive this situation.  If so...yikes...maybe too much info Smile.

    My dog just had a bout of pancreatitis and we're thinking his is chronic, but I was talking to the human doctors at work, and apparently human and dog pancreas issues aren't quite the same.  Of course, the cause is different since in humans pancreatitis, for example, is mostly from alcohol or gallstones apparently, neither of which should be plaguing dogs!  Now, enzyme difficiency is different, so maybe there are more similarities, but at least pancreatitis wasn't too similar.

    Smile I hope you don't find out any scary information!

  • Thanks for the note, Nicole....gotcha'.  After I read your post I quit procrastinating and checked out Pancreas problems in humans.  Yes, much more complex. I've had a few people say they must have something for humans that would work for Bob; now I know...no way.  And glad to report...no human enzymes for humans with pancreas problems. Wink

    I hope I get a satisfying answer (one way or the other) from the doctor this week. It might be good news!

    Moderators...sorry, I should have posted this in the health section and not nutrition. 

  • Most hospitals have a compounding pharmacy. I used to have to get a special syrup version of a new drug to treat my son's digestive problems when he was an infant (grape flavor, yum!). They didn't just add flavor (most do that nowadays), they literally made the drug suspension there in the facility because it was only available in adult version at the time. I like Prozymes and can highly recommend it as a supplemental support, but it's true that EPI dogs need the pancreatic sourced supplement (for now anyway). I would just get the vet's permission to order WAY ahead. I got a year's worth of thyroid meds for Ben at a time - worked nicely with his annual checkup.
  • The reply from Nature's Farmacy West is as follows: 

    "Ours is USA sourced Porcine Pancreatin Powder.  Guaranteed Pig!  Contains Amylase, Protease and Lipase.  We choose to fortify this mix with additional prebiotics, probiotics and enzymes to help break down the foodstuffs to make everything process easier, keep pH correct etc.  We still recommend a Digestive Enhancer as well for overall diet processing."

    Talk about relief...