CAM blogs

CAM Meets Jamie McClement

Jamie McClement, Clinical Director Abingdon Park Veterinary Group
BVSc MSc CertSAS MRCVS RCVS Advanced Practitioner in Small Animal Surgery

Jamie graduated from Liverpool Veterinary School in 2001. In 2009 he passed the RCVS certificate in Small Animal Surgery and in 2015 was awarded advanced practitioner status in small animal surgery by the RCVS. Jamie is interested in joint surgery, management of osteoarthritis and reconstructive/oncological surgery. He  is currently enrolled  on the MSc course in musculoskeletal science, run by the UCL and the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital. Outside of work Jamie enjoys, fencing, photography and running.


Jamie kindly agreed to answer the following questions:

What are your feelings on how we currently manage this common debilitating condition in dogs?

I think we should be very proud of the improvements in OA care over the last few years – certainly in the time I have been in practice, understanding of the condition and treatment modalities have moved on significantly. However, my concern is that all this knowledge and capability is not being transferred effectively for dog owners to take advantage of – clients want confident advice on what is best, and we as vets and VNs should be the ones to give this – we need to ensure that we actively share our knowledge with these owners so they can provide the best care for their dogs, and do not go elsewhere for more confident but less accurate advice!  I really believe that CAM is just the kind of thing we need as a source of information for veterinary staff and dog owners.


As a veterinarian what do you feel is essential for managing canine arthritis effectively?

Osteoarthritis management is a team sport. It needs a multimodal approach, and needs to be collaboration between the vet, the owner, and hydrotherapists/physiotherapists.  The vet needs to be the leader of the team which supports the owner – the owner is the one who will provide the daily care and management of the patient after all.  Management needs to be a year-round effort from all involved, each contributing their bit whether it is medication, rehabilitation or environmental management.  It cannot just be a fifteen-minute job every six months in a recheck.  The more the owner is engaged with the process, the better the care will be.


How do you see treatment options for arthritis progressing over the next ten years?

If you look at how far things have come in the last ten years, I hope they’ll continue at the same rate! I think regenerative medicine is very exciting, but has not yet achieved its real potential in arthritis care yet, I’m very keen to see how that develops.  I think we’ll see more biological treatments being developed as immunomodulators in the joints.  I hope also that the use of physiotherapy and hydrotherapy continues to grow.


If you could have the opportunity to give one tip/piece of advice to an owner with a dog suffering from arthritis what would it be?

Don’t give up!  There is so much that can be done these days for your dog – arthritis care is so much better than it was in the past.  Ask questions, and as the disease progresses, alter the regime to accommodate it.  Never be happy with an unhappy dog!