Apr 5, 2024

What happens to my pet’s fat at VetStem?

Posted by Bob under VetStem

Have you ever wondered what happens after your pet has fat collected for treatment with VetStem Cell Therapy? If so, we have some good news for you: we’re going to break down the steps in between fat extraction and stem cell injection in this week’s blog!

VetStem Cell Therapy begins the same for every pet. First, your pet must have fat extracted during a minimally invasive anesthetic procedure. For dogs and cats, the fat tissue is most commonly taken from their abdomen while horses tend to have fat taken from their tailhead. Once extracted, the fat is aseptically packaged by your pet’s veterinary team and shipped overnight to VetStem in a temperature-controlled container.

Once VetStem receives the fat tissue, our laboratory team processes the package to ensure there are no potential sterility issues and that the temperature is at or below the maximum acceptable temperature. They also confirm that the pet’s name matches what we have in our database to ensure patient identity. If there are any issues with identity or sterility, processes are delayed until we can rectify the issues.

The fat then goes into process in our laboratory. Lab technicians follow strict protocols using VetStem’s patented technology to process each pet’s fat in sterile hoods in our GMP compliant facility. Stem cells are extracted from each sample and counted using an extremely accurate cell counter so we know exactly how many stem cells we get from each fat sample we process. We also confirm the viability of the cells. This allows us to ensure we provide what are considered to be therapeutic doses.

Meanwhile, our customer service team is busy on the administrative side entering data for each pet who is having fat processed that day. We record everything from breed, sex, age of the pet to injury/condition being treated, concurrent treatments, fat collection site and so much more. Customer Service also generates shipping labels so that doses for each patient can be shipped back to your veterinary team via priority overnight.

Stem cell doses are prepared for your pet based on the specific injection requests from your veterinarian. These doses, like the fat tissue, are packaged carefully in a temperature-controlled container and shipped out the same day for receipt at your veterinary clinic the following morning. Most of the time, your pet will receive their stem cell injections the day the doses are received at the clinic, which is approximately 48 hours after the initial fat collection procedure.

But the fun doesn’t end there! Our lab technicians also store any remaining cells for your pet, which are carefully labeled in one of several cryotanks. The storage location of extra cells is noted in your pet’s file so we can easily locate them for future stem cell recoveries. This means your pet can receive future stem cell treatments as needed without having to undergo another fat collection procedure.

And there you have it: a day in the life of a fat tissue sample at VetStem. If you’re curious about VetStem Cell Therapy, visit our FAQs page for more information.


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