Re: Mast Cell Tumors : Lessons Learned
Posted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:11 am
going to the vet today.. I am So stressed Ugh
PitBull-Lady wrote:not really sure what that last poster was saying. but I found it very disrespectful to our concerned pet-parents on the forum who are looking for constructive answers to health issues.
jamielvsaustin wrote:I hate cancer. It scares me so much it makes me consider not having future pets.
mrgrimm wrote:jamielvsaustin wrote:I hate cancer. It scares me so much it makes me consider not having future pets.
See this is the mindset that I try to get people not to have.
tiva wrote:You might want to post over on the health page, and you should also consider joining the Yahoo group for mast cell tumors in dogs.
My Tiva has had mast cell tumors twice (both stage II, same as your dog), and she's still chugging along at age 16. MCT is NOT always a death sentence, and the survival rates are increasing all the time. THere are also TONS of new treatment options, particularly with advances in chemotherapy (which is much less painful for dogs than for people).
Here's a good overview: http://www.caninecancer.com/Mast.html
What you should consider doing right away:
1. Get the pathology report, if you haven't already. You need to know the mitotic index (ie, how active the cancer cells are at growing), and you need to know how clean and large the margins were
2. If the pathology report shows that the margins are clean and complete (ie, they got all the tumor out), stage II cancers are usually considered cured. So a good diet, with supplemental tumeric, CoEnzyme Q 10, and omega 3 fatty acids, are all great ideas, but chemo and additional surgery usually aren't recommended.
3. If the pathology report shows that the margins were not clean and large (ie, some of the tumor may still be in there), then the dog's chance of survival will be increased if you do more. Go to a specialist if you possibly can! Additional surgery, or radiation, or chemo are the usual choices that your oncologist will offer you. Our Tiva's first MCT was Stage 11, bad margins, so we chose additional surgery (her MCT was in her tail, and amputating the tail was a great option and curative completely, since the cancer hadn't gotten to her lymph nodes). Tiva's second MCT was also stage II, bad margins, but an extremely low mitotic index. We decided not to try chemo, because Tiva was so old at the time and it wouldn't increase her survival chances by much. But if she had been younger, or if the MCT had a higher mitotic index, we would have gone with chemo. The options now for chemo are great--pills that have few side effects, for example, such as Palladia. They are expensive.
There really are lots of options, and survival is increasing for MCT dogs, so get the pathology report, discuss your options with your vet, and ask for a referral to a cancer specialist if there's one nearby. Good luck!!
julie64 wrote:This is one thread I wish would stop growing. Shay lost her fight in Nov and I hope I don't have to ever post anymore dogs in this thread.