PDA

View Full Version : Possible liver tumor - don't know what to do


Lenny J.
June 3rd 10, 07:28 PM
I took my 12 y/o cat to the vet about 6 months ago and everything was
ok, including the blood work. Ever since then, his health has
deteriorated. It started with him acting strange which I thought was
because of the harsh winter we had. Then he started being picky about
his food, he'd eat but he was picky about what he'd eat. By the time
his weight loss was noticeable he developed an enlarged abdomen and
was eating kitty litter. When I noticed those things, it was obvious
something was wrong and took him to the vet.

He recently got an x-ray (side view) and blood work done. The x-ray
shows an irregular mass where his liver should be. The vet can't even
see the liver on the x-ray. He had the other vet at the clinic look at
it and she too came to the conclusion that my cat most likely has a
liver tumor.

The blood work shows my cat is severely anemic. His HCT is 21% (30-45
is normal), RBC is 5.21 (5.00-10.00 is normal). The HGB, MCV, and
platelets are also low. The calcium and MCH are WNL but are borderline
low. The liver values are WNL but are on the higher side.

From what I'm guessing, the anemia is non-regenerative. The vet
doesn't think Epogen is worth trying and recommended using OTC vitamin
supplements. He also said I could get an ultrasound done, but I
suspect he believes it's not worth doing at this point. My feelings
are that the cancer is too far advanced for anything to be done. Or if
it can be treated it would cost thousands of dollars that I really
can't afford.

The vet did prescribe amoxicillin and Lactulose. The Lactulose is
supposed to be for treating the cat litter that is in my cat's
intestines (apparently the anemia made him eat cat litter).

Right now my cat doesn't look too good. He had been eating (canned
food) until last night (Wednesday), I'm hoping I can get him to eat
today. He appears to be nauseous. He seems hungry though and will eat
Nutrical. Early this morning he wanted to sit in my lap and be petted
and now he doesn't even want to be touched. That's very unusual
because he has always loved lots of attention.

I don't think he has much time left. His behavior is odd and I don't
know what to make of it. He's a strange cat to begin with. The other
cats I had who had advanced liver disease and CRF did not act like
this - they didn't do anything at all which is how I knew it was time
to let them go. The cat I had who had chylothorax and a heart based
mass didn't even act abnormal at all (other than some open mouth
breathing). I can't tell if this cat is developing hepatic
encephalopathy or what is going on. This morning she kept sticking her
paw in the water bowl before she would drink it, I think she may be
going blind.

I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions as to what I should do?
Should I get an ultrasound done to confirm a tumor? Does it sound like
it may not even be worth it at this point? I just don't know what to
do. I'm considering euthanasia if his condition continues to
deteriorate over the next day. I just can't believe everything was ok,
including blood work, six months ago. The vet palpitated the abdomen
and didn't feel anything unusual six months ago. I'm totally in shock
here. This is all so sudden. I can't help but wonder if maybe they're
wrong and it's not a tumor but I don't know what else it could be. I
just don't know what to think or do. My brain has completely shutdown.

Rene
June 3rd 10, 09:30 PM
First of all, I'm sorry you are dealing with this.

I know several people who have had similar mass/cancer/tumor
situations like yours, where just a few months before the cat had been
examined and everything was fine. Most of them opted for an
ultrasound. You could call your vet yet today and ask his opinion
about that. In some cases, people also opt for exploratory surgery,
but if the cancer is fairly progressed once the operation has started,
there's little the vet can do except not wake the cat up (if the owner
agrees too).

Also call your vet and mention the nausea. Perhaps he'll suggest a
medication like Pepcid to help calm that.

In the meantime, I'm sure you know it's important for him to eat
something. Have you tried something bland like chicken baby food,
warmed just a little? Many cats love rotissiere (sp) chicken too.
Whatever jump-starts his appetite for now.

You know your cat the best, and if his quality of life continues to
deteriorate, euthanasia is the kindest option. Please keep us posted--
and don't be afraid to ask your vet questions in the meantime.

Lenny J.
June 4th 10, 07:01 AM
On Jun 3, 3:30*pm, Rene > wrote:
> First of all, I'm sorry you are dealing with this.
>
> I know several people who have had similar mass/cancer/tumor
> situations like yours, where just a few months before the cat had been
> examined and everything was fine. Most of them opted for an
> ultrasound. You could call your vet yet today and ask his opinion
> about that. In some cases, people also opt for exploratory surgery,
> but if the cancer is fairly progressed once the operation has started,
> there's little the vet can do except not wake the cat up (if the owner
> agrees too).
>



Do you happen to know how much all this typically costs? I know around
here an ultrasound is about $700. Even then it may not be able to
diagnose very much. I don't know how much exploratory surgery or
treatment typically costs. I'm not even sure surgery is possible.
There may be a clotting problem.

at
June 4th 10, 07:43 AM
On Thu, 3 Jun 2010 11:28:36 -0700 (PDT), "Lenny J."
> wrote:

>I took my 12 y/o cat to the vet about 6 months ago and everything was
>ok, including the blood work. Ever since then, his health has
>deteriorated. It started with him acting strange which I thought was
>because of the harsh winter we had. Then he started being picky about
>his food, he'd eat but he was picky about what he'd eat. By the time
>his weight loss was noticeable he developed an enlarged abdomen and
>was eating kitty litter. When I noticed those things, it was obvious
>something was wrong and took him to the vet.
>
>He recently got an x-ray (side view) and blood work done. The x-ray
>shows an irregular mass where his liver should be. The vet can't even
>see the liver on the x-ray. He had the other vet at the clinic look at
>it and she too came to the conclusion that my cat most likely has a
>liver tumor.
>
>The blood work shows my cat is severely anemic. His HCT is 21% (30-45
>is normal), RBC is 5.21 (5.00-10.00 is normal). The HGB, MCV, and
>platelets are also low. The calcium and MCH are WNL but are borderline
>low. The liver values are WNL but are on the higher side.
>
>From what I'm guessing, the anemia is non-regenerative. The vet
>doesn't think Epogen is worth trying and recommended using OTC vitamin
>supplements. He also said I could get an ultrasound done, but I
>suspect he believes it's not worth doing at this point. My feelings
>are that the cancer is too far advanced for anything to be done. Or if
>it can be treated it would cost thousands of dollars that I really
>can't afford.
>
>The vet did prescribe amoxicillin and Lactulose. The Lactulose is
>supposed to be for treating the cat litter that is in my cat's
>intestines (apparently the anemia made him eat cat litter).
>
>Right now my cat doesn't look too good. He had been eating (canned
>food) until last night (Wednesday), I'm hoping I can get him to eat
>today. He appears to be nauseous. He seems hungry though and will eat
>Nutrical. Early this morning he wanted to sit in my lap and be petted
>and now he doesn't even want to be touched. That's very unusual
>because he has always loved lots of attention.
>
>I don't think he has much time left. His behavior is odd and I don't
>know what to make of it. He's a strange cat to begin with. The other
>cats I had who had advanced liver disease and CRF did not act like
>this - they didn't do anything at all which is how I knew it was time
>to let them go. The cat I had who had chylothorax and a heart based
>mass didn't even act abnormal at all (other than some open mouth
>breathing). I can't tell if this cat is developing hepatic
>encephalopathy or what is going on. This morning she kept sticking her
>paw in the water bowl before she would drink it, I think she may be
>going blind.
>
>I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions as to what I should do?
>Should I get an ultrasound done to confirm a tumor? Does it sound like
>it may not even be worth it at this point? I just don't know what to
>do. I'm considering euthanasia if his condition continues to
>deteriorate over the next day. I just can't believe everything was ok,
>including blood work, six months ago. The vet palpitated the abdomen
>and didn't feel anything unusual six months ago. I'm totally in shock
>here. This is all so sudden. I can't help but wonder if maybe they're
>wrong and it's not a tumor but I don't know what else it could be. I
>just don't know what to think or do. My brain has completely shutdown.


I'm sorry your cat is so sick :(

About all you can do at this point, is try to make him comfortable, and
feed him whatever he will eat. Try sardines (avoid the ones in mustard):
they aren't nearly as 'bad' for cats as tuna is. Buy a tin. If he will
eat

You will have to decide when his quality of life has become so poor that
euthanasia is the only choice. :(

Keep in mind that cats can and do hide pain very well.

Likely, that is what is causing his odd behavior: he is already very,
very sick, indeed.

I wish I could offer more, or better advice than this, but I cannot. I'm
sorry.


---
avast! Antivirus: Outbound message clean.
Virus Database (VPS): 100603-1, 06/03/2010
Tested on: 6/4/2010 1:43:54 AM
avast! - copyright (c) 1988-2010 ALWIL Software.
http://www.avast.com

cybercat
June 4th 10, 09:20 AM
"Lenny J." > wrote in message
...
On Jun 3, 3:30 pm, Rene > wrote:
> First of all, I'm sorry you are dealing with this.
>
> I know several people who have had similar mass/cancer/tumor
> situations like yours, where just a few months before the cat had been
> examined and everything was fine. Most of them opted for an
> ultrasound. You could call your vet yet today and ask his opinion
> about that. In some cases, people also opt for exploratory surgery,
> but if the cancer is fairly progressed once the operation has started,
> there's little the vet can do except not wake the cat up (if the owner
> agrees too).
>



>Do you happen to know how much all this typically costs? I know around
>here an ultrasound is about $700.

A few years ago they were $300 here. Like, maybe, three years ago.

Rene
June 4th 10, 03:20 PM
> Do you happen to know how much all this typically costs? I know around
> here an ultrasound is about $700. Even then it may not be able to
> diagnose very much. I don't know how much exploratory surgery or
> treatment typically costs. I'm not even sure surgery is possible.
> There may be a clotting problem.

About four years ago, I paid $350 for an ultrasound. I am not sure
about exploratory surgery costs.

Like at Galdalf said, cats are very stoic about pain. Sometimes, when
the pain is really bad, they will hide themselves.

I am sorry again and wish you the best. Treasure every moment you have
left together.

June 6th 10, 03:42 PM
Hi Lenny,

I'm so sorry for your troubles. As many have said, an ultrasound is
really the only way to make a definitive diagnosis. Here in NY they
cost about 400 dollars. It has been my experience that blood tests can
be very limited as to what they will show. Please keep us updated on
the situation, and good luck:)