Fani - Golden Retriever with Lymphoma
Unfortunately, our pets can be affected by tumours as well. Both benign and malignant tumours are a big worry for the owners of affected pets. For a veterinary surgeon, dealing with malignant diseases needs special approach, both for therapeutic but also for welfare reasons.
Fani, 9.5 years old Golden Retriever was presented to our surgery for the "final opinion". The owners were very sad and worried as they thought that the euthanasia was the only humane solution left for their pet. Fani was treated by other vet for few weeks but she was getting worse by each passing day.
Clinical examination of Fani revealed:
- General weakness and apathy, pale mucose membranes - anaemia
- All visible lymph nodes were enlarged
- Tachycardia, dyspnoea
- Normal body temperature
The results of clinical exemination were highly suggestive of very serious, life-threatening condition - lymphoma. Lymphoma is malignant disease of lympho-reticular tissue.
It was necessary to react quickly as every day was important for Fani. We performed other necessary examinations as blood tests, x-ray examinations and biopsy of one of the lymph nodes. The diagnosis of lymphoma was comfirmed.
We had long conversation with the owners about all prons and cons of lymphoma treatment including side effects of the therapy, average survival time and quality of life of treated patients and cost of the treatment.
We agreed to start with one of the standard treatment protocols for lymphoma. We also agreed not to let Fani suffer by any means if treatment had not shown beneficial results quickly.
7 days after the beginning of therapy, Fani was obviously much better. All lymph nodes were almost of a normal size, the results of blood tests were better and Fani was more active again. X-ray films also relieved much better picture.
After few weeks of treatment Fani was clinically normal (disease was in remission) and she was back to her normal living habits. Regular treatment protocol was continued.
Good communication and understanding between owners and veterinary surgeons is essential for cases like this one. Treatment of serious diseases such as lymphoma needs both veterinary surgeon experienced in oncology field and determined owners.