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petdrz, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 7325
Experience:  Over 30 years of experience in caring for dogs and cats.
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We have a 12 year old cat who is very dear to our hearts.

Customer Question

We have a 12 year old cat who is very dear to our hearts. She is an irreplaceable member of our family. Recently we noticed that her breathing was labored. We took her to Metropolitan Veterinary Hospital in Akron, Ohio. We left her there for two days of
testing. They think that she may have lung cancer. She is in an oxygen cage to help her with her breathing. They suggested that we might consider the possibility of euthanasia. We wish to do the same for her as we would for any other inseparable family member.
That includes chemotherapy, other therapies, perhaps newer than chemotherapy as well as clinical trials if such are available. I have read about new up and coming treatments for metastatic cancer whereby the cancer dna cells are used to create a virus which
attacks only cancer cells. It seems reasonable that they would do this on animals in the process of developing the treatment for humans. Perhaps there are such trials now in progress. We would like some helpful advice on where to turn from here. Any help wil
be appreciated. e
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  petdrz replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thanks for trusting me to help you and Snuggles today. I am a licensed veterinarian with over 25 years experience and would be happy work with you but need a bit more information in order to better assist you if you don't mind.

Do you have a record of what sorts of testing were already performed on her. I am assuming xrays and probable ultrasound.

Was blood work done? If so, how is her other organ function?

Are they thinking this is primary lung cancer or metastatic cancer?

Was this a specialty hospital with internal medicine specialists or oncologists?

Thanks and I will respond further after you reply. There may be a slight delay while I formulate and type a thorough response or I may be offline, but if so, I will respond as soon as I am able.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
These are our notes from conversations with the doctors.
x-rays of her lungs and stomach.
3 patterns shown on xrays – alveolar pattern, bronchial pattern, interstitial pattern in the tissue of the lung itself. She has all three patterns showing on xray.
X ray of Abdomen showed a little bit increase of fluid and some decrease in detail of organs, which he thought indicated some inflammation.
Ultra sound showed a mass in front of the heart – anterior * something….changes in lungs most likely cancer. Surgery to certify cancer would be risky with anesthesia because of breathing problems. They considered a tracheal wash to see if they could get cells to test for cancer.Abdominal ultrasound found evidence of enlargement of mesenteric lymph nodes. Took aspirants of lymph node to send to pathologist.They did blood work showed an elevated white cell count specifically the nutrivils?? Which is probably a result of what they are seeing in the lungs. But doesn’t seem to be serious. Organs were good.Heart strong although mass in front of it.
Link to hospital has oncologists and internal medicine specialists.
Snuggles doctors – Dr. Chambers and Dr. Carothers
Expert:  petdrz replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the reply.

It sounds as if she has been in very good hands. Your notes actually give me a fair understanding of where she is at with her disease. Unfortunately, even with the strong evidence of cancer, without knowing the cell type involved, it may limit the ability for targeted treatments to that specific type of cancer, but I understand the risks involved with risk versus benefit to get a sample. As far as newer therapies and clinical trials, your best bet is to get input from the oncologists in a university setting. These are usually the best resource as they have the research and finances to conduct the such an effort. They too would be limited by the fact that we have an unconfirmed cancer of unknown origin, but they would be the best source of knowledge of new and promising potential therapies that may help.

Your obvious closest choice would be the Ohio State University Veterinary Medical Center in Columbus LINK HERE

As far as what comes to mind when I think of who would offer the most advanced (by human standards) treatment options, the source that comes to mind first is Colorado State University Veterinary Cancer Center. LINK HERE

I would work with your current specialist to consult either of these institutions in regards ***** ***** case and get input that may help guide you as to what to do next.

Snuggles is lucky to have you on her side. I am sure she knows she is loved. Good luck with her and please keep me posted as to how things progress for her.

I hope this is helpful. Please let me know if you have ANY other questions. My goal is to give you 100% satisfaction and if you are not yet satisfied, please reply so I can clarify for you.

Dr Z

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