How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question

Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 12467
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 42 years of experience.
55012488
Type Your Veterinary Question Here...
Dr. Michael Salkin is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Our 13-year-old female cat has developed subcutaneous tumors

Customer Question

Our 13-year-old female cat has developed subcutaneous tumors on her side just behind her left forepaw. She developed similar tumors in the same general region several months ago, and we had them removed (twice) by a local veterinarian. Both tumors were fibrosarcomas. However, our cat found the experience of being taken to the vet in a transport cage, having surgery done to remove the tumors, and the recovery from the surgeries to be very traumatic. Also, the veterinarian said there was no guarantee she could ever completely remove the tumor cells using surgery. Accordingly, we wonder if there might be a way of destroying such tumors without resorting to surgery. For example, are there any agents that could be injected directly into a subcu. tumor to kill it? Incidentally, the cat is not showing any obvious signs of distress from the tumors, but they are growing.

I have had a considerable amount of experience doing surgery on small animals (mostly lab rats and mice, and a few rabbits) as I am a physiologist and I taught human and animal physiology and anatomy at U.C. Berkeley for some 35 years. I also have done research on cancer in lab animals. However, I retired in 2002, and so I have not kept up with the literature on cancer therapies.

If you have information on this question, or if you can refer me to people who might know of such solutions, I would greatly appreciate hearing from you.

Sincerely,

Charles S. Nicoll, Ph.D.,
Professor Emeritus,
Dep't. of Integrative Biology,
U. C. Berkeley
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.
Aloha! You're speaking with Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Nicoll, local agents haven't entered our armamentarium for addressing fibrosarcomas in cats. The FSA seen in older cats are not associated with the feline sarcoma virus and occurs most commonly on the trunk, distal limbs (as you've reported), and pinnae. Most FSA demonstrate rapid, infiltrative growth, with metastasis (regional lymph nodes, lung) occurring in less than 20% of cases. Unfortunately, metastasis has occurred in your cat - at least locally.

The clinical management of choice for FSA remains wide surgical excision, and given its relatively low metastatic rate - at least to distant sites - complete resection of fibrosarcomas would be expected to provide prolonged tumor control durations. In patients where complete surgical resection is not anatomically feasible, such as when tumors involve the distal extremities, amputation of the affected limb is usually curative. The institution of adjuvant radiation therapy may be effective for preventing local disease recurrence in dogs but we don't have enough information on that therapy in cats to routinely recommend it. In a study of 44 cats with FSA it was found that the mitotic index and tumor site correlated with prognosis, whereas histologic appearance, tumor size, and duration of tumor growth did not. Cats with FSA of the head, back, or limbs and with a mitotic index of 6 or greater had the poorest prognosis.

Please note that it becomes moot to consider injecting a tumor when we know that the FSA has already sent out streams of malignant cells from those tumors. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 12467
Experience: University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 42 years of experience.
Dr. Michael Salkin and 3 other Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.
Thank you for your kind accept. I appreciate it. I'll speak to you soon.

I'm going to check back with you in a few weeks for an update. Feel free to return to our conversation - even after rating - prior to my contacting you if you wish.

Please disregard the info request.

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • It was so professional, so personally concerned (as we were) and you answered all of our questions. George and I are so happy that I found "JustAnswer" on my Google search -- you are now in my "Favorites" list! And, yes we do love our kitty - she makes our life complete! Bev & George Boca Raton, FL
< Last | Next >
  • It was so professional, so personally concerned (as we were) and you answered all of our questions. George and I are so happy that I found "JustAnswer" on my Google search -- you are now in my "Favorites" list! And, yes we do love our kitty - she makes our life complete! Bev & George Boca Raton, FL
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther Woodstock, NY
  • Thank you so much for taking your time and knowledge to support my concerns. Not only did you answer my questions, you even took it a step further with replying with more pertinent information I needed to know. Robin Elkton, Maryland
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Andy

    Medical Director

    Satisfied Customers:

    2630
    UC Davis graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VE/vetforyou/2012-6-20_33122_PearlPhoto.64x64.jpg Dr. Andy's Avatar

    Dr. Andy

    Medical Director

    Satisfied Customers:

    2630
    UC Davis graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/1I/1ISUDVM/2011-3-1_22028_Honeymoon2005075294928803490646858.64x64.jpg Dr. Bruce's Avatar

    Dr. Bruce

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    1656
    12 years of small animal veterinary medicine
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/RY/rydergar/2012-6-6_192240_IMG0328.64x64.JPG Dr. Gary's Avatar

    Dr. Gary

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    1451
    DVM, Emergency Veterinarian, BS (Physiology)
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/PC/pcbobber/photo.64x64.JPG Dr. Bob's Avatar

    Dr. Bob

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    1306
    35 years in practice
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/doggfone1/2009-07-16_133633_vet_pic.jpg Dr. Scott's Avatar

    Dr. Scott

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    865
    12 years of small animal, equine and pocket pet experience in medicine and surgery.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/AN/andrewDVM/2012-4-27_12585_iStock000011751407XSmall.64x64.jpg Dr. Drew's Avatar

    Dr. Drew

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    1889
    Small Animal Medicine and Surgery
  • /img/icons/shirt.jpg Dr. Jenn's Avatar

    Dr. Jenn

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    1225
    Practicing small animal medicine since 2004 , also involved in working with animal rescue groups.