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I found a pea-sized tumor in my dogs mouth, on her front lower…

I found a pea-sized tumor...
I found a pea-sized tumor in my dog's mouth, on her front lower gum, just inside her lip. The vet performed laser surgery to remove the tumor, then sent it off for biopsy. A week later, I received a call from the vet that the lab results indicated melanoma - howver, since the biopsy was performed with laser, it could not be determined whether or not the tumor was malignant or benign, although it was determined the vet had not removed all of the melanoma. She gave me options of a referral to a vet oncologist who could perform radiation treatment, which would not only be expensive, but stressfull for my 10.5 year old mini schnauzer. I declined, and decided to wait it out, and if/when she shows signs of illness (due to spread to internal organs), I would have her put to sleep to keep her from suffering.

Right now, my dog seems fine, has lots of energy, and eats very well. That is, she shows no sign of sickness at all. However, I have read that oral melanoma is almost always malignant, and the life expectancy can be anywhere from 30 days to 8 months. Her vet suggested a chest xray to see if her lungs have been affected yet. I asked her what can be done (besides radiation) if she discovers cancer around her lungs - and she said nothing else could be done, and that even with stressful radiation, my dog's life might only be prolonged a couple of weeks. So I have opted not to have the chest xray, but again, to simply wait it out.

Since then I found sites on the internet that sell 4Life Transfer Factor products for both humans and dogs. I actually contacted by email one of the (supposed) vets listed on the site. He said to start with the recommended dosage of the canine version of 4Life Transfer Facter (which costs about $70 for a 2 supply. He said after a few days, add the human version of the same, giving 1 capsule twice a day for a week - then add a capsule, twice a day, each week until the cancer either responds or the dog refuses to eat the dosed food. A bottle of 60 capsules is about $60 (or $1 per capsule). If I keep adding two capsules per day each week, after about 8 weeks, I'd be up to 16 human capsules a day + the canine formula. If she's still alive in 6 months, that'd be almost a bottle a day(!). He assured me there is no toxicity with this, and no maximum dosage, and the more I give her, the better. If I though it would help, I'd try my best to scrape up the money, but I honestly could never afford $60 a day, and it doesn't seem feasible that her system could handle 60 capsules every day.

Have you ever heard of 4Life Transfer Factor? Does any of this sound feasible? The vet is supposedly a real vet, who later became a holistic vet. Is there even such a thing as a holistic vet?

Again, right now, my dog seems totally fine, no sign of illness, and eats totally well. Do you have any suggestions for me?
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Answered in 19 minutes by:
6/26/2010
YourPetVet
YourPetVet, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1,041
Experience: 6 years general medicine, surgery and emergency medicine
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Hello, Thats a lot of pills!! Yes there are holistic vets but I have never heard of 4life factor. Has any of the growth come back?? Was the original pathology able to determine the severity of the melanoma (mitotic index)? You may want to discuss with your vet using a drug called Piroxicam. It is an anti-inflammatory with some anticancer properties. Also, visit your vet for checking for regrowth as well as feeling the local lymph nodes as they may help indicate spread of disease. If the tumor is not regrowing quickly then it may not spread quickly as well. Thanks for your question.

 

J Bache, DVM

YourPetVet
YourPetVet, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1,041
Experience: 6 years general medicine, surgery and emergency medicine
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Customer reply replied 8 years ago

It's only been 3 weeks since the surgery, but so far I don't see any new growth - however, the vet said the lab told her she hadn't gotten it all, according to the sample they received. The vet said the lab determined it was melanoma, but couldn't tell severity because the sample they received had been removed with laser (i.e., couldn't see if it was malignant, or not).

Hello, I would then continue to watch the area for regrowth and the local lymph nodes as these are the first areas to show spread. However, texts on canine cancer state that mose melanomas are benign.
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