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Neurofibrosarcoma


Guest houndstooth4
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Guest houndstooth4

I am feeling really overwhelmed right now, and I'm hoping some people out there can help me with information and decisions.

 

Two weeks ago on Wednesday, I came home and noticed a little bump on Blueberry's head. It looked like a mosquito bite. I checked her all over and couldn't find any scrapes, fur messed up, ticks, or anything that looked like an injury. It had me worried. The next morning, it was a knot on the top of her head that was hard. By that night, it looked like a walnut. I called the vet and took her in on Friday morning. They aspirated it, and as soon as they did, I knew it wasn't like the fatty lumps we'd had aspirated on our previous hounds. It bled like crazy. When they looked at the cells on a slide, they said the cells were "suspicious." So, the decision was made to take it off the next week. Wednesday we took her in and she had her surgery, the lump was removed and her teeth were cleaned. They sent the lump off for pathology.

 

The results came back today -- neurofibrosarcoma. She is in an intermediate stage. The margins were dirty. There were two to four milimeters around one side of the tumor, and I just recall that the other side was marginal. Apparently, this type of tumor is known for some sort of tendril like threads that can protrude from it. The vet had commented after the surgery that there was only one blood vessel going into it that was feeding it.

 

We were given a laundry list of options. One, do nothing and pray that it was all removed, and possibly remove another lump later, as well that it hasn't spread anywhere else. Two, do surgery again now and try to get more area around the site of the tumor to look for clean margins. Three, do chest and abomen x-rays as well as lymph node aspirations to see if the cancer has spread anywhere. Four, get a referral for an oncologist, who will probably want to do number three anyway, and possibly radiation.

 

I know that I need to do research on it and find out what I can about, and I'm going to. I was just wondering if there was anyone here who has had experience with this type of cancer. Hearing from other people about what their experiences have been would be really helpful to us while we're trying to make our decision about what to do.

 

And also, if anybody has any advice about why my money tree won't grow in the back yard, I'd be glad to hear about that, too! Thank you in advance for any and all help that you can offer us. I'm trying to wrap my head around the whole thing right now.

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No advice, but I'm so sorry about Blueberry. Hopefully they got it all and she is fine.

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Xavi the galgo and Peter the cat. Missing Iker the galgo ?-Feb.9/19, Treasure (USS Treasure) April 12/01-May 6/13, Phoenix (Hallo Top Son) Dec.14/99-June 4/11 and Loca (Reko Swahili) Oct.9/95 - June 1/09, Allen the boss cat, died late November, 2021, age 19.

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Guest Mom2Shiloh

I don't know much about that kind of cancer :( but you might want to check with the folks on Circle of Grey (on Yahoo Groups) to see if someone there has -- There are just so many people with so much experience there. Sending good energy.

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I am so sorry that you're having to face this with Blueberry, and you've some good ideas above. I am not a vet, and my only experience with a fibrosarcoma was in one of my cats -- and for what it's worth he is still going strong after surgery with wide margins (knock hard on wood). To the extent I understand it, the "good news" of this type of tumor is that it doesn't typically spread agressively to other areas of the body. The bad news is, they do have the tentacles that you mentioned, so the chance of recurrence is high. My vet mentioned that we might need to do repeated "debulkings" on my cat to keep the tumor under control. Chemo and radiation treatments were not mentioned, probably because it seemed likely that the cancer hadn't spread. If I had a hound with the same diagnosis, I would be tempted by a second surgery to remove tissue with wider margins than the first.

 

I hope your vet gives you excellent guidance; I know how hard it can be to face this. Our thoughts will be with you.

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Guest houndstooth4

Thank you! I am going to check in on Circle of Grey, too!

 

I am making a list of questions to ask the vet in a day or two, so all the information helps!

 

 

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Ah, Carrie, it's just so hard to imagine anything being wrong with Blueberry. It seems like yesterday that she was a mischievous puppy. How old is she now?

I'm not familiar with that type of cancer either, but I think it would be good to do the X-rays. Knowing if or how much it has spread would make a difference in your decision I would imagine. It seems as if you moved fast on this, and that is positive.

Sending lots of telepathic good thoughts from Lydia and the crew, and hugs and prayers from me.

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Nancy, Mom to Evangelina, Kiva and Laila
Missing Lacey, Patsy, Buster, my heart dog Nick, Winnie, Pollyanna, Tess, my precious Lydia, Calvin Lee, and kitties Lily, Sam and Simon
My Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/Catsburgandhoundtown

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Guest houndstooth4

She's eight years old. We've been told that this type of cancer rarely moves to another spot, but can be very tough to get rid of in the area where it's found.

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Dirty margins? Well, rats on that. :(

 

I don't know anything much about this type of cancer. If it were me, I'd be getting a referral to an oncologist ASAP, but I do understand the problem with getting money trees to grow. However, Dr Couto doesn't charge for email advice and usually gets back to people very quickly, so I would definitely contact his team and ask what they think! They may have some very straightforward information for you that will help you make up your mind how to proceed.

 

Good luck - and plenty of scritches to the lovely Blue. :wub: :wub: :wub:

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The plural of anecdote is not data

Brambleberry Greyhounds My Etsy Shop

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Guest mcsheltie

Fibrosarcomas respond well to radiation, but not to chemo. Sine they did not get clean margins I would think they would be recommending this in an aggressive fashion. Dogs do very well with radiation. Much better than people do.

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My girl Haley had a fibrosarcoma tumor removed on her leg, same situation and prognosis, with dirty margins and high probability of recurrence. After evaluating our options with an oncologist, we opted for no chemo or radiation (the odds did not seem good in her case). We could have amputated, but chose not to because of the slow growing nature of the cancer, combined with her age (11 years) and her nervousness about adapting to new situations. It just seemed like at her age, something else might happen to her before the cancer returned, and I wanted her to have as many happy days a possible until. Instead, we saw a holistic vet and have had her on anti-tumor herbal supplements, and have seen no recurrence in more than a year. She continues to be well and happy, and we are thankful for every day with her.

 

I hope this helps and gives you some hope.

Cheryl, mom to Remy and Woot. Always in my heart Haley, Henry and Sheba.

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I would definitely check in with Dr. Couto. My guy has soft tissue sarcoma. I'm not sure what the difference is between all of the various sarcomas but radiation was recommended for him after they could not get clean margins. Dr. Couto recommended an injectable chemo treatment that is just as effective as the radiation, easier on the pups and less expensive. Definitely worth finding out if this treatment might work for your pup as well. Good Luck!

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I would definitely check in with Dr. Couto. My guy has soft tissue sarcoma. I'm not sure what the difference is between all of the various sarcomas but radiation was recommended for him after they could not get clean margins. Dr. Couto recommended an injectable chemo treatment that is just as effective as the radiation, easier on the pups and less expensive. Definitely worth finding out if this treatment might work for your pup as well. Good Luck!

 

I agree, Dr. Couto is doing some incredible things with soft tissue cancer and a chemo agent called 5FU. Here is all of the info on how to get in touch with them:

 

 

Here is info on how to contact Dr. Couto and his team. The email or phone consult is free, however a few people have been told they must sign up for the website ($50) and submit the request that way. Dr. Couto tells me that this is not true. However, if you are a member of their website, please submit your request that way because it will automate things and make record keeping for them easier. Certain chemo drugs are free; you would need to pay to have them administered.

 

 

Greyhound Health and Wellness Program

 

Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine

 

601 Vernon Tharp Street

 

Columbus, Ohio 43210

 

Phone: (614) 247-6757 or (614) 247-8490

 

Email: greyosu@osu.edu

 

Website: http://www.vet.ohio-state.edu/GHWP.htm (registration and fee now required to get full access to this site)

 

 

This email goes to the team. If Dr. Couto is traveling, you may get a quicker answer from one of his team members. Drs. Marin and Zaldivar typically respond to greyhound owners. The consult is free but if you can afford to support the program please do so. You can sign up for full access to the website ($99 per calendar year) or donate through the giving page on the website. If you decide to donate, you can double your money by giving through the Greyhound Project. They will match the funds that you donate.

 

Just go to this website and scroll down to the appropriate donation button:

 

 

http://www.adopt-a-greyhound.org/donate.shtml.

 

 

The Team:

 

 

Dr. Couto, Department Head, Greyhound Medicine, Oncology and Hematology

 

Dr. Lili Marin, Greyhound Health and Oncology

 

Dr. Sara Zaldivar, Greyhound Health and Oncology

 

Dr. William Kisselberth, Oncology

 

Dr. Cheryl London, Oncology

 

Dr. Cristina Iazbik, Blood Bank Director and Hematologist

 

Dr. Bridget Urie, Oncology Resident

 

Dr. Matt Sherger, Oncology Resident

 

Dr. Joelle Fenger, Oncology Resident

 

Dr. Roberta Portela, Oncology Resident

 

Dawn Hudson, Vet Tech

 

Ashley DeFelice, Vet Tech

 

Stacey Gallant, Vet Tech

 

 

Drs Marin and Zaldivar are originally from Spanish speaking countries. If you have trouble understanding them over the phone, you might ask for one of the other vets or vet techs to “translate”.

 

 

Dr. Couto's direct email is:

 

couto.1@osu.edu

 

His phone number is also 614-247-6757. If he is in town, he typically returns emails in the early hours of the morning.

 

 

You should know that (in my humble opinion) they need more staff. Unfortunately finances do not permit it at this time. They do 20 to 30 greyhound consults a day along with all of their "in canine" patients. Depending on their workload there may be a wait for the consultation. If you are contacting them on an emergency basis, please let them know.

 

If you want to make an appointment to be seen in person/canine, you can call the main number to set up a date/time. The main number for the veterinary hospital is 614-292-3551.

 

 

If you decide to visit OSU please contact me. I may be able to put you up in a local home, provide moral support, or just help with logistics:

 

 

Finewhipador-drool@yahoo.com

 

 

 

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Guest houndstooth4

Thank you so much for all the info on contacting Dr. Cuoto. I'm still trying to digest everything and take it all in.

 

I was hoping that we'd have clean margins at least and not have to worry about how to proceed.

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If your Vet is open to consulting with Dr. Couto, that would be the way to go. If not, it certainly wouldn't hurt to get all the labs and surgical/visit notes and send them to OSU yourself. They are wonderful with which to work! Since it's not an emergency situation, you do have time to do some research on your own so that you can become familiar with various treatment options and experiences of others (Circle of Grey on yahoo). If there are no other constraints, a consult with an oncologist, who would be open to consult with OSU, would be helpful. Once you're comfortable that you know enough to make the best decision for Blueberry, you can take the next step.

I will keep you and Blueberry tucked gently in my heart and will be sending healing white light and prayers of comfort.

Linda, Mom to Fuzz, Barkley, and the felines Miss Kitty, Simon and Joseph.Waiting at The Bridge: Alex, Josh, Harley, Nikki, Beemer, Anna, Frank, Rachel, my heart & soul, Suze and the best boy ever, Dalton.<p>

:candle ....for all those hounds that are sick, hurt, lost or waiting for their forever homes. SENIORS ROCK :rivethead

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Guest hlpnhounds

Fibrosarcomas respond well to radiation, but not to chemo. Sine they did not get clean margins I would think they would be recommending this in an aggressive fashion. Dogs do very well with radiation. Much better than people do.

 

I work at a veterinary specialty/referral hospital. We have Rad-Onc as well as Med-Onc departments. We see quite a few of these patients there.

I can tell you that they are ALL Rad-Onc patients (radiation oncology) and the ones we have seen have responded very well to treatment with few complications. The treatments are extensive as well as expen$ive. The way our program works is that the patient will have a CT done to pinpoint the exact location of the growth so the beam can be aimed in the precise spot. Generally speaking, the number of treatments depends upon the type/location of the growth. Most of these go through 12-16 treatments and then it's done. Also, most of them check into the hospital on Sunday evening, stay with us through the week, go home on Fri night for family time as the onco dept is not there on the weekends and then come back sunday night for another stay. In the meantime, they are getting the royal treatment by the evening and overnight ICU staff who become their "pet sitters" overnight. They are generally with the same staff members on most nights and become very attached to certain people---and us to them also !

Complications that I've personally seen are pretty minimal and treatable---especially if the patient is able to stay in the hospital during the week with an overnight staff on hand. We have seen oral burns toward the end of the treatment course which sometimes makes eating/drinking painful. We provide pain management for that as well as a "miracle mouthwash" which is a cocktail of numbing agents, antibiotics and an antiseptic.

 

Contact OSU asap. Dr Couto may have some suggestions for you including a treatment protocol that your local onco Dr may not be familar with.

 

I know they have a fabulous rad-onc dept at OSU. I'm not sure about treatment costs/discounts with this type of therapy. As we know, they will provide chemo drugs for treatment at your veterinarian if they are not available as long as you provide blood samples throughout the ongoing treatment protocol for their studies....I'm not sure what they can provide in the way of radiation treatment options besides GREAT advice.

 

I hope this info helps.

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