Friday, February 01, 2008

Diagnosis

Rascal's pathology report diagnosed a Hodgkins-like lymphoma. This type of lymphoma is rare in cats, slow growing, and though not curable, it is treatable.

Dr. C recommended an initial treatment of prednisolone and chlorambucil. These would increase Rascal's quality of life at a relatively reasonable cost, and there would be minimal side effects. At this stage the only other thing he would require would be weekly blood work to keep an eye on his white cell count (because of the chlorambucil).

Without any treatment, Rascal's life expectancy could be anywhere between 2 to 12 months. With treatment, he will likely live longer than a year.

Rascal's dad is out of town until next week. So we have another appointment on Wednesday, by which time he'll be back. By then Dr. C will know what the cost of the chlorambucil, and we'll have had time to discuss and digest all this information.

If anyone has had experience in any of this, I'd love to hear from you.

In the meantime, Rascal's just glad to be home again. His incision is doing fine and healing nicely. He's done a good job of keeping it clean. But as you know, trips to the vet can be quite exhausting, so he has the important business of an interrupted morning nap to tend to.

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42 Comments:

At Friday, February 01, 2008 10:06:00 AM, Blogger Renee said...

Oh poor Rascal! Know that we are praying for you to have the best quality of life. I know your family is making sure you are pampered like the king of the house that you are.

Lots of love!

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 10:18:00 AM, Blogger Smeagol & Strider (Mystery & Gizmo too!) said...

We're sorry to hear this news, but the treatment sounds like it would be helpful. We're keepin' you all in our purrs and purrayers.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 10:30:00 AM, Blogger Diamond Emerald-Eyes said...

Many Purrrs to you Rascal. At least you will get treatment and hopefully you will feel better and live and long and healthy life. Storm beat the odds and you can to. You will be in my preyers!

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 10:53:00 AM, Blogger The Meezers said...

oh Rascal, we is furry sorry about your diagnosis. The treatment sounds promising, and just look at Storm the Furry Fighter- she has lived well over a year with her cancer and today is her 12th purrfday! Our one who came before hadded advanced cancer and was given 2-3 weeks to live, and he lived over 7 more months. If your dr suggests sub-q flooids when you are feeling bad, take them - they really really werk well.
we are purraying for you and your family Rascal. We know that you will do great on your treatment.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 11:57:00 AM, Blogger Sunny's Mommy said...

I'm sorry. I have no experience with the treatment. Sometimes it's not an easy decision to treat or not. I hope the cost for the drug is not high and therefore not a factor for you.

Best wishes for all of you.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 12:08:00 PM, Blogger The Furry Fighter said...

Hiya Rascal! Firstly I am sorry to hear about your diagnosis...but fear not, many many many cats survive for good lengths of time and it sounds like your particular lymphoma is one of the less-aggressive ones, is it large or small-cell lymphoma?

Ise got/had a large-cell lymphoma but have been in remission since mid-April 07. Back in December 2006 my vet told me I could expect an average suurvival time of 6-9 months with chemo. I am now 14 months since diagnosis!!! I had to go through the Madison Wisconsin protocol which was 3 types of drugs rotated in a cycle over 26 weeks. I pretty much sailed through it apart from two minor off-weeks.

After the Mad Wis protocol came to an end I was supposed to take Leukeran as a maintenance drug to keep the Thing at bay/away but I got very sick with leukeran and could not take it anymore - most cats get on with it, I was just unlucky. Thankfully, new evidence is emerging that leukeran as a miantenance drug made little difference to those cats who had already been through the heavy-going Mad Wis protocol. So I just take my prednisolone steroid tablet every other day and wish for the best!

There is a link to a yahoo group on my website called 'Feline Lymphoma Caregivers', it is quite a good resource and is quite handy for picking up tips - but please bear in mind that every cat is different and reacts differently to things, so what one person says works for their cat may not work for yours. Always listen to your vet and don't be afraid to ask questions or even question why he is doing things. My vet is great and he explains everything and ensures he is aware of the latest developments/knowledge resources in feline lymphoma study (he specialises in it).

Your Human will need extra love though cos you know how much they love us right? Well, it is a bit of an emotional rollercoaster looking after a Lymphoma Kitty...cos everytime you are a bit quiet, or you walk away from food or you do the occassional sick-up it will scare them...your Human will be super-watchful over you so even if you are only walking away from your food cos you aren't quite hungry enough expect your human to worry! Mine is much better now, but she does worry a bit too much sometimes!

Be hopeful, it is not unheard of for some cats to live for up to 3,4 or 5 years after being diagnosed with Lymphoma...feel free to mail me with any questions

Your new buddy
*hugs*
Stormie xxxxxx

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 12:51:00 PM, Blogger Zippy, Sadie and Speedy said...

Oh Rascal, at least der is a treatment and yoo won't lose to much of da quality of life. When da one dat came before had cancer mom sed dat as soon as treatment became more like torture dat she would let her go...we gots an extra 18 months beyond what the vet said! And dey come up wif new stuff alla time now!

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 12:56:00 PM, Blogger Tina T-P said...

Hi Rascal - Wow, it looks like you're going to have some adventures coming up. I have a blogger friend who has a woofie that I think has the same thing only doggie version and he is doing fine with treatment - I'll find out more for your mommy and let her know. You and your family are constantly in my thoughts. Hugs, T.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 1:09:00 PM, Blogger momsbusy said...

we is so glad yu is feelin better. we is gonna keep purrayin fer yu ans yur famly. i hope yur meds dont take all of yur mom n dads green papers.

yuki & kimiko & kintaro

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 1:11:00 PM, Blogger Dragonheart & Merlin said...

Oh Rascal, we are sorry to hear that you have lymphoma. It sounds like there are some good treatment options for you though. We are purring and praying for you, and sending lots of hugs and purrs to your mom.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 1:11:00 PM, Blogger Fat Eric said...

Oh Rascal, we are purring for you and sending good wishes for your recovery. It sounds like you have good humans who will do everything to look after you.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 1:14:00 PM, Blogger jenianddean said...

OH Rascal- we are so sorry to hear the news. We will be sending you tons of purrs and prayers.

-Jasper McKitten-Cat

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 1:54:00 PM, Blogger Tybalt said...

Oh no, poor Rascal! I am so glad there is treatment for you, though. I am going to keep purring for you very hard, and for your family too.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 2:31:00 PM, Blogger Riley & Tiki said...

Rascal, we are sorry that your test results were not the news you wanted to hear. There have been a lot of improvements in cancer treatments for kitties. With treatment, Vincent Who Came Before lived for 3.5 years more after his diagnosis. The cancer came back, but he ended up leaving us due to kidney failure not cancer (he had fibrosarcoma not lymphoma). We are purring very hard for you.
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 3:28:00 PM, Blogger Hot(M)BC said...

Oh gosh Rascal, we's sorry it wasn't the best of noos. We's glad they can help yoo tho! We's purring sooper hard for yoo to feel grate wif the meddycines and be happy the longest time pawsible.
PURRRRRRRS
PURRRRRRRRRRS
PURRRRRRRRRRRRRRRS
Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrs
PURRRRRRRRRRRS

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 3:43:00 PM, Blogger Radcliff, Allie, Luna & Ozzie said...

We sorry your noos wasn't what you hoped to hear. We have no experience with things like cancer, so we'll just send you some healing purrrrrss.

ppuuurrrrrrrr
ppuuurrrrrrrr

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 3:58:00 PM, Blogger William said...

Aw, Rascal, hang in there buddy. What a nice post from Stormie--I certainly couldn't give you more info than that. And Rascal's mom, my mom says try not let your heart break in advance.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 4:37:00 PM, Blogger Grr, Midnight & Cocoa said...

Oh dear. We sure were hoping for better news, but reading the previous posts make things sound very hopeful. We don't have any experience with this sort of thing, but please know that you have all of our love, prayers, purrs and support.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 5:10:00 PM, Blogger Cheysuli and gemini said...

We have not had to deal with this, but we did have to deal with an incurable issue with Georgia. Quality of life is very important. The only thing is: trust your gut and don't give up on them. Georgia's outside (best) life expectancy had her dying a year ago--and she is still doing well.

Good luck

Purrs.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 6:00:00 PM, Blogger Artsy Catsy said...

Oh, Rascal, we wish we knew how to just make this ordeal you're going through go away! But we know how brave you are and how loving your beans are, so we think you should hope for the best. And with squillions of your cat blogosphere friends sending you healing hugs, purrs and headbutts, that lymphoma doesn't stand a chance!

Purrrrrrrs,
Rocky
& everybody at Artsy Catsy

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 6:15:00 PM, Blogger Pumpkin said...

I'z sorry to heer the noos wuzn't as good as yoo hoped but at leest it's treatable. Look at the brite side: the stoopid collar is gone, yoo can take yore own baffs agin, the beans will pamper yoo, and the drugs mite make yoo feel REELY GOOD! Sending yoo lots of heeling kitty purrrrs frum Hah-why-eee.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 6:47:00 PM, Blogger Eric and Flynn said...

Oh no, Rascal we are sorry that the noos wasn't good, but at least it sounds as if you can still enjoy a good quality of life. We are sending lots of purrs and (((hugs))) furr yoo and your family to give you strength to overcome this.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 8:13:00 PM, Blogger vlb5757 said...

Maggie and the mutts sure had hoped for better news, but it sounds like you are in loving hands with your vet and your mommy. We will still keep positive thoughts and wait to see what the vet says after your daddy gets home. Keep your spirits up and make mommy give you treats as often as possible.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 8:32:00 PM, Blogger Kathy said...

Hi, Rascal!
We are sorry to hear you will have to be on mediCATshun. Maybee it wil make ewe feel alot better. We shur hope so! You and your Mom & Dad are in our thoughts and purrayers. Remember, you have friends to help ewe thru this. You dont hav to bee alone.

Kathy, Ralph and Shadow, Ziggy, Max, Pixel and Europa

in Airy Zona

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 9:12:00 PM, Blogger The Cat Realm said...

Sweet Rascal - we will all purr for you and I see that Storm already talked to you! We sure hope the medicine will make you feel better and the good example of Storm will make you go into remission also!!!!
And we are glad you have such wonderful humans who will take good care of you!
Purr purr purr purr purr purr purr
The Cat Realm

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 9:46:00 PM, Blogger Derby said...

Purrs to you Rascal and the rest of your family. You sound like you are thinking all of this through very well and will make the best decision you can for Rascal.

 
At Friday, February 01, 2008 9:48:00 PM, Blogger Samantha & Tigger said...

Hey Rascal!! We will purrr and purray for you to feel better with the medicine and to have a remission like Storm!! (((((((HUGS)))))))) to you and your family!!
Your FL furiends,

 
At Saturday, February 02, 2008 6:40:00 AM, Blogger Parker said...

Oh Rascal, I am sorry about the diagnosis. We are sending purrs and prayers for you!
I think that Storm will be a great friend to have now, her and her human should be able to answer a lot of questions.
Smooches to you!

 
At Saturday, February 02, 2008 7:02:00 AM, Blogger Poppy Q said...

Rascal - I is sorry you is stuck with silly lymphoma. My mum says her bosses cat, who is 10 has had lymphoma for over a year. She has to go to the vets and have chemo every month, and a few pills every day. However she is a very happy cat with a good appetite who sleeps outside all day in the sun. Her mum says the treatment is worth it.

I hopes you is feeling rested and all your furs grow back soon. Sending you a thousand warm healing purrs across the ocean.

Poppy Q and mum

 
At Saturday, February 02, 2008 8:53:00 AM, Blogger Kaz's Cats said...

Rascal, we're really sorry about your diagnosis, but we know that your humans will work to give you the best treatment, and therefore best quality of life. At least the evil collar is off - we think that you look very handsome without it, even if you're missing a little fur.

Purrs

Gypsy & Tasha

 
At Saturday, February 02, 2008 11:54:00 AM, Blogger Jimmy Joe said...

Oh no, buddy, I'm so sorry to hear you gots the lymphoma. I hope your treatments start to work soon. Hang tough, buddy!
Your buddy, Jimmy Joe

 
At Saturday, February 02, 2008 1:23:00 PM, Blogger Kathy said...

We want to know how Catzee is doing with all of this going on? She will help take care of you, Rascal.
Love to you all,
The Airy Zona cats!

 
At Saturday, February 02, 2008 1:37:00 PM, Blogger Tara said...

Sorry to hear the news, but keep hope. Purrin for you!

Tara

 
At Saturday, February 02, 2008 10:27:00 PM, Blogger Cecilia & The 2Bs said...

Oh Rascal, we are sorry about your serious illness. We hope the treatments will help and that you will still be around for a loooooong time. Purrs and headbutts.

 
At Saturday, February 02, 2008 10:35:00 PM, Blogger The Cat Realm said...

Hey Rascal - did you hear about Petey already?
http://peteytales.wordpress.com/
Karl

 
At Sunday, February 03, 2008 12:46:00 AM, Anonymous Fiona Bun said...

Sending nose bumps and purrs

 
At Sunday, February 03, 2008 6:08:00 AM, Blogger jackie said...

With so many friends praying for you and sending good thoughts, you have to have a long and happy life!
Sending scratches under the chin.

 
At Sunday, February 03, 2008 9:57:00 AM, Blogger Ariel said...

Reading all this has mad me very sad.
I will continue to purr and mom will pray.I'm sorry I didn't visit sooner
mom had an upper respiratory infection and stop blogging for awhile.

 
At Sunday, February 03, 2008 3:26:00 PM, Blogger Bad Kitty Cats & Megan said...

Rascal, please know you have been in our prayers and purrs and we are thinking good warm wishes your way. In all our time with sick kitty cats, we have seen miracles happen. So no matter what the Vet says, there is a place for miracles too! Never give up hope!!

We know you are so very loved and many people are rooting for you! Let's defy the odds!! All our love and nose kisses and headbumps.

Feel better soon.

Love - Zed Monster and the BKC

 
At Sunday, February 03, 2008 7:50:00 PM, Blogger Junior said...

I am sorry to hear this diagnosis Rascal. I hve no helpful suggestions, but Meowm and I will purray our hearts out for you!

 
At Monday, February 04, 2008 6:28:00 AM, OpenID devonfinefibres said...

Poor little chap. The one really good thing is that Rascal himself has no idea about it. Like all animals, he lives for the moment and will be happy and content providing you can keep on top of symptoms. The goats send goaty kisses!!!
Lesley

 
At Monday, February 04, 2008 7:31:00 PM, Blogger Kaze, Latte, & Chase said...

Rascal we're sorry we were away when you got your diagnosis. While it certainly isn't benign at least it sounds highly treatable and your quality of life will be great. I guarantee you're going to be spoiled and loved on lots. Please do be nice to your mom, they seem more upset about these things than we do. hugs to you all!

KAZE

 

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