In 2010, Veterinary Pet Insurance Co. (VPI), the nation’s oldest and largest provider of pet health insurance, received more than 71,000 claims for cancer diagnosis and treatment in pets – making cancer-related conditions collectively the fourth most common type of medical claim received last year.
Below are the 10 most common cancer-related claims received by VPI in 2010:
Lymphosarcoma or Lymphoma
Skin Cancer (Malignant Skin Neoplasia)
Splenic (Spleen) Cancer
Bone or Joint Cancer
Hepatic (Liver) Cancer
Thoracic (Chest) Cancer
Brain or Spinal Cord Cancer
Oral (Mouth) Cancer
Treating these cancers can be a considerable financial burden. In 2010, VPI policyholders spent more than $26.4 million on the top 10 cancer-related conditions. Cancer of the brain or spinal cord was the most expensive on the list, costing policyholders an average of $720 for the diagnosis and nonsurgical treatment options. For those who opted to pursue surgical treatments for this condition, policyholders incurred $2,642 on average.
“It’s important for people to realize the prevalence of this disease among companion animals,” said Dr. Carol McConnell, vice president and chief veterinary medical officer for VPI. “Pet owners should become familiar with the signs and symptoms of pet cancer, as well as consider the financial responsibilities involved with the diagnosis and treatment of this disease. Whether it’s through a savings account, additional credit and/or pet insurance, financial preparation is key.”
Regardless of which side of the vaccine debate you are on, it is important to realize that vaccines can and do cause cancer in pets. There are many reasons for this but one of the most dangerous vaccine ingredients appears to the vaccine adjuvants.
Vaccine adjuvants are chemical substances which are supposed to enhance the immune response to the vaccine. There are several types of adjuvants. Some of the most common adjuvants include aluminium hydroxide, aluminium phosphate and calcium phosphate.
Veterinarian Patricia Jordan, states that the World Health Organization named aluminum hydroxide, a component of most of the currently used veterinary vaccines, a grade 3 out of 4 carcinogen, with 4 being the most carcinogenic. The veterinary vaccines that include these carcinogenic adjuvants include Rabies, Leptospira and Lyme.
On page 305 of the report IARC Monographs on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans: Volume 74, World Health Organization, International Agency for Research on Cancer, Feb. 23-Mar.2, 1999 under Summary of Date Reported and Evaluation, Section 6, this appears:
6.3 Veterinary studies
“at least 563 cases of vaccine-associated sarcomas in cats have been reported in just six years, with an estimated annual incidence of 1–13 per 10 000 vaccinated cats. Vaccine-associated sarcomas have been mostly associated with the administration of recently introduced feline vaccines containing adjuvant. Tumors that develop at vaccination sites are morphologically different from those that develop at non-vaccination sites. A cohort study found that cats developed sarcomas in a shorter time at sites used for vaccination than at non-vaccination sites and that there was an increased risk for sarcoma development with increased numbers of vaccines at a given site.”
Clearly, there is an association between aluminum adjuvants and cancer in pets. The danger is not limited to pets however: many vaccines for infant, toddlers and adult humans also contain aluminum hydroxide, e.g., Anthrax [which as of October 2011, the FDA wants to start to test on children to see how that vaccine works in kids], DTaP, DTaP-HepB-IPV, Td (Massachusetts), Hepatitis A, Hepatitis A-Hepatitis B, Hepatitis B and Tdap.
For more information on the many issues with vaccine adjuvants, read: