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Thread: 4yr Old Dusty Lymphoma

  1. #1

    Default 4yr Old Dusty Lymphoma

    This is my mate Dusty



    He is a four and a half year old Australian Shepherd.
    Two weeks ago (Fri 3/6/11), he started eating less and became picky in what he ate, prior to this he wouldn't hesitate to eat and didn't stop until his meal was finished.
    Last Tuesday (7/6/11) we took him to the vet and the vet prescribed antibiotics. By Thursday he was getting worse so we had him admitted to the vet clinic and put on a drip.
    I visited him each day and whilst he was energetic and happy, he would eat very little if anything.
    On Friday we had blood samples sent off and yesterday (14/6/11) we received news that dusty most likely has Lymphoma but they would need more blood samples to confirm. We will apparently get these results tomorrow.

    It was such a shock because he is 4 years old, well looked after, very healthy and I'm certain he had never had swollen lymph-nodes at least in the neck before as I regularly check him for ticks and grass seeds.

    On the good side of things, he returned home yesterday and I gave him a bath after which he was very happy and ate a good amount of chicken and later on a bit of lamb. Today he has also eaten well but does require a bit of encouragement. Apart from the eating he seems pretty normal.

    I have done a lot of reading and searching but it is a lot to take on in such a short time so I have a few questions and I welcome any feedback at all.

    My questions are;
    Can they confirm Lymphoma with just blood tests?
    What are my options for treatment? ie a. no treatment b. chemo c. ??? d. ???
    Does chemotherapy have to be done by a specialist as we live in Cairns and from what I understand there are no specialists?

    I'm sure the vet will tell me more when they receive the test results but I'm anxious to know more now.


    Thank you very much

  2. #2

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    What a stunning boy Dusty is!!

    I'm so sorry for his that he is unwell.

    I can't give you any advice as I have never had to go through this before but wish you all the luck for Dusty.

  3. #3
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    I can only talk about human lymphoma as this is the cancer I am in remission from.
    In humans lymphoma can only be diagnosed with an excisional biopsy.
    Blood tests generally do not pick up lymphoma. High LDH levels can, yes, indicate lymphoma but many other things as well.

    It is treated by chemo and it will be up to you whether you wish to proceed with this or not. In humans there is also radiation for stages 1 and 2.
    It will also have a lot to do with what stage the lymphoma is at as to what treatment is advised.
    In humans there are 4 stages. I have no idea about canine lymphoma.

    Any posts made under the name of Di_dee1 one can be used by anyone as I do not give a rats.

  4. #4
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    Lymphoma is classified as a blood cancer. Leukemia is with the red blood cells and lymphoma is the white blood cells and lymph. Lymph nodes swell and become malignant tumours.
    Some lymphomas are very slow moving yet others are very aggressive. Only pathology on some tissue taken can verify what type it is.

    Any posts made under the name of Di_dee1 one can be used by anyone as I do not give a rats.

  5. #5

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    That sounds very difficult.

    I would be very upfront asking about QUALITY of life during and after treament. Length of treatments, expected side effects. COSTS of treatment and investigations.

    Best of luck.

  6. #6
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    We had a boxer who suffer lymphoma we were told we could do chemo but it would be very expensive and we would have to drive him into the city (over an hour away) for the treatment and that it would only give him an extra 6 months. Max sadly suffered a very aggresive cancer and 9 days after the diagnosis (blood test and biopsy) we sadly put him to sleep as he could not stand up and had lost 12kg in 4 days, but as the vet told us all cases are different the best advice I can give is to write all your questions down then sit down with your vet and make a decision from there.

  7. #7

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    Thank you for your thoughts and advice everyone.

    I will let you know when I know more

  8. #8
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    Our Tobias had Lymphoma........he initially did not have any external lumps, His main lump was quite deep in his abdomen. Tobias had a biopsy to get his diagnosis confirmed. Sadly because His Lymphoma was found too late for Chemo.
    Tobias was nine when he had his, your lovely dog is so young.
    I think the only one who can give you all the answers you want will be your local vets. They will know what is available in your region. And you can always ask for a second opinion..........
    Pets are forever

  9. #9
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    I feel that second opinions with diseases are a MUST before making any decisions.

    Any posts made under the name of Di_dee1 one can be used by anyone as I do not give a rats.

  10. #10

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    The blood test results came back and they confirm he has Lymphoma.

    The vet is going to speak to the specialists in Brisbane about treatment and get back to us with the details. She did mention two alternatives that were in tablet form I think but she said they didn't have the life extending ability chemo has.

    I'll be expecting an email tomorrow with all options laid out. Until then any comments are welcome.

    Thank you

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