Recently, Tripawds member Tai brought Cimetidine’s anti-cancer effects to our attention. This is an over-the-counter heartburn medication for humans (also known as Tagamet), has been found to
prevent reduce the risk of cancer metastasis in dogs with mast cell tumors. Several reputable studies have reported this positive news about Cimetidine anti-cancer properties.
Please see 2021 update below
How does Cimetidine (Tagamet) help treat Mast Cell Cancer in Dogs?
Cimetidine is often given to Tripawds to help with nausea after chemotherapy. Or, to prevent gastric ulcers when switching medications, such as NSAIDs. Has your vet has prescribed an acid-reducer to help with nausea, such as Prilosec? If so, ask if it’s OK to give Tagamet instead. According to VetInfo.com. Cimetidine is the generic form of the brand name drug Tagamet.
Cimetidine is often used to treat and prevent ulcer formations in the pet’s intestine and stomach. It works to adjust the pH balance in the stomach by blocking the histamine-2 receptor.
Cimetidine is also known as histamine a2 antagonist, as it reduces acid formation in the stomach. Although it may not be beneficial to pets with high grade cancer, it can help to reduce the effects of mast cells on the gastrointestinal tract.
Dr. Demian Dressler, author of the Dog Cancer Survival Guide, has also added Cimetidne to his list of possible mast cell tumor treatments, and Tai posted information about several studies which discuss this drug’s anti-cancer effects. Another study by Life Extension Foundation, says:
“Cimetidine works through several mechanisms of action, preventing immune suppression caused by tumor secretion of histamine, halting cancer growth, preventing angiogenesis, promoting cancer cell death, and averting often-fatal cancer metastasis.”
Cimetidine is also known by the brand names of Tagamet, and is in the same family of drugs as Famitidine, Ranitidine and Zantac. Ask your vet for details about whether it’s right for your Tripawd.
*2021 Update on Tagamet and Benadryl to Treat Mast Cell Cancer
Science is always changing, so if you are considering using Tagamet to “cure” mast cell cancer, please check out this important discussion with Dr. Nancy Reese, DVM, PhD, on The Dog Cancer Answers podcast, “Do Tagamet and Benadryl Cure Cancer?.”
Despite these benefits, Tagamet and Benadryl are not a miracle cure for cancer.
Dr. Nancy says, “If there was something that was easy, like Tagamet and Benadryl, that would cure cancer, I would buy stock in Benadryl and Tagamet!”
Dr. Nancy cautions owners about believing therapies that sound too good to be true.
And definitely don’t delay treatments that are scientifically and clinically proven to help fight and even reduce cancer in order to chase after a fad protocol. — Read more on The Dog Cancer Blog