or Connect
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Health › Am I doing the right thing?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Am I doing the right thing?

post #1 of 32
Thread Starter 

My best friend in the whole world, Minstrel, was diagnosed with having a spindle cell tumour on Friday. I was advised by the vet that they would give her a chance, by operating, if not, she had 3 weeks at most.
She will be 15 in July and has been getting 6 drops of metacalm in her meal every 4 days or so due to stiffening of her hips. We found a large lump only a week or so ago, right at her hip. At the same time we noticed she wasnt eating and her mobility had decreased (couldnt get onto the bed, wasnt comfortable going up stairs)
Vet says xrays show the lump isnt attached to anything, the biospy said it was spindle cell and has given her 50/50. We have been giving her anti-biotics (Nisamox) since last Saturday (just over a week now) and have been giving her metacalm every day also.
She is eating, a little at a time (not like her old, eat till she was full days) but she feels 'more nourised' and heavier if you pick her up, and her mobility has seemed to get better... taking the stairs 2 at a time, can jump on the bed again! She is purring nearly all the time too!
She is booked in for surgery on Wednesday to have, hopefully, the full tumour removed. The vet has said her blood work -kidney and liver function was ok, apart from a low white cell count
Right now, to make sure she has the best chance for surgery, am giving her what she does like to eat, chicken breast, dry food supliments, soups, tuna...to keep her strength up
Am I doing the right thing though, by having her go through what could be a very painful op or should I be letting her live whats left of her life as comfortably and painlessley as possible?
Also, any suggestions as to the best kinds of foods to give her to keep her strength up?
post #2 of 32
ohhhhhh I am so so sorry!

I think you are doing the right thing........ If all her stats are OK, then it's OK to give her a chance at a few more years. The surgery shouldn't be painful for her since she'll be asleep....if she dies in surgery you know you did everything you could, and if she makes it through and has a couple weeks of painful recovery (I'm sure the vet will give you meds) that leads to a couple happy and healthy years then think how happy you'll be that you did it.

Either choice would not be a bad choice in your situation....so good luck.

You can try hills A/D to keep her strength up, it's a great food for cats that aren't eating much, but you have to buy it at your vet.

Good luck and please keep us updated!
post #3 of 32
You are doing the right thing. I hope it all goes well.
post #4 of 32
Cats can easily live to be 20+. If you think she has a chance at living her life the way she was meant to, go ahead with the surgery.

Sending tons of for her surgery. Please keep us updated.
post #5 of 32
I agree with everyone else. Lots of vibes for you and Minstrel.

Also if she needs to be on long term pain control, ask about the Fentnyl (sp?) patch. It has been used on cats at 1/4 transdermal patch for long term pain control.

There are some risks that some think are linked to metacam use in cats. Nothing has been concrete as to the risks though

My vet prescribes buprenorphine, an opiod drug for my cats when pain medication is needed. It has worked great for my kitties that have have massive tooth extractions.

Please keep us posted
post #6 of 32
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all of your advice and kind words
I will let you know what happens on Wednesday
post #7 of 32
Prayers for her to be ok.
post #8 of 32
I hope everything works out OK and you don't have to put her down. Or, that when you do need to put her down, you know that you gave her a chance.

I don't think there's anything wrong with waiting it out a bit to see if she gets better. As your vet said, if things turned bad so quickly, perhaps they can turn around with some time. At some point however, if she doesn't get better, you may need to make the decision.

I'm in the same situation at the moment. My cat has been "diagnosed" with FIP - and I know a lot of people would just put their cat down. However, she's only 7 months old and I can't imagine not giving her a shot to get better. She had ear mites and has been very dehydrated and constipated. Since both of those are treatable, I want to give her a chance to recover without those making her feel worse. If I do have to put her down eventually, I want to know that I tried everything to help her get better.

Good luck. I hope that things start to turn around for you and Bobber very soon!
post #9 of 32
Thread Starter 

just wanted to send an update, sorry I havent done it sooner ...
Minstrel had her op on Wednesday. The vet phoned to say she had operated, but it was a nasty tumour, one which had attached itself to her leg ... she said it was a large tumour. The tumour though had only just become noticable, the vet said it had been under the muscle in her back leg ... the tumour had burst through the muscle sheath, hence the reason we could now see it

She said she got out all she could but couldnt get it all. She had removed a lot of muscle from her back leg and had scraped everything she could ..... that she probably wouldnt be able to do much with her leg ... they had put a drain into the leg too but the cancer is still there ....

I got her home 5pm Wednesday, what a sorry state she was, her wee leg was soo thin ... and she couldnt really put any weight on it ... when we got her out of the box, she did run up stairs (me trying not to scream, my heart in my mouth) I got up after her for her to turn and run back down again (think it was just adrenaline)

she had some water and a wee bit of chicken on Wednesday, back at the vets on Thursday, they were happy, the drain and stitches were all ok (she hates the buster collar btw, but then, what animal doesnt?) on Friday, nearly eating like her old self, I nearly had another (near) heart attack ... came on to check my mail, she jumped straight onto the desk (bad leg and all...)
the drain came out yesterday and she is walking a lot easier, her leg isnt as shaky, still eating just about anything and everything ... dont think she has stopped purring yet (well apart from when she is eating)

the only thing she isnt happy about, she normally sleeps on the bed beside me... as she is still oozing blood (as hubby calls it 'Minstrel juice' gross huh?) and am worried about her hurting herself jumping onto the bed, have locked her out of the bedroom .... I have been sleeping on the sofa in the living room beside her though (its lower and a heck of a lot easier to 'waterproof') when the oozing stops, am going to make her a couple of stops to get to the bed and we can sleep in bed again (my back in killing me)

she gets the stitches out this Friday ... I know that the cancer hasnt gone its only a waiting game now, then there will be only one option left to us..... looking at her last Wednesday night, the blood from the drain, the pain she was in ... I felt angry with the vet, I felt bad that we were putting her through a huge op that hadnt really solved anything ... but

seeing her now, how much happier she is today (even with the collar, stitches and hole where the drain was) I had decided that however long we have her (we know now what to look for symptoms wise) she is going to be a very happy VERY LOVED cat and I guess thats all I can do for my best friend huh?
post #10 of 32
Your story inspired me to have a biopsy done on Odo's lump. His is near his spine and above his left hip--it's hard to find some of the time as it seems to disappear in certain positions. My vet had found it once before, and we thought it was just a lipoma and left it alone, but since Odo has been limping (due to arthritis), I'm wondering whether the lump could be affecting his ability to walk. Anyway, he's scheduled for a biopsy on April 5th. I thank you for sharing Minstrel's story, and I hope you have lots of happy, healthy time left together.
post #11 of 32
glad to hear she's feeling better... did the vet not think that amputation was an option? or has the cancer already spread so it wouldn't solve the problem?
continued & that she'll feel even better & heal swiftly
post #12 of 32
I am surprised at the way your vet dealt with this to be honest. I had a cat last year with a limp, she was taken to a specialist who found spindle cell tumours in her knee joint, and they said the only cure is amputation. SAdly, she had 2 arthritic hips, and the hip on what would have been her remaining leg was already the worst of the two, so neither the specialist nor my normal vet would put her through it, but otherwise she woudl have had it amputated, I had an 11yo the year before who had her leg amputated and she sailed through it. I do wish you luck your baby, and it might be worth asking about amputation.
post #13 of 32
Thread Starter 

they never gave me the option of amputation ...
she does have arthritus in her back hips, she will be 15 in July. When the vet removed what she could, she did say the lump was at the back of her leg, near her pelvis (am no vet but looked like the lump was right at her hip) ...

I dont want to hurt her any more though, put her through another op if it wouldnt work. Am feeling really guilty though, reading all the posts, people have mentioned amputation ... why didnt the vet mention it to me? Could it be her age? When she was under having the lump removed (well what they could) surely if they could have amputated, they would have called me?

feel like I am letting her down now .... its bad enough, i have to go back to work tomorow, no leave left ... not looking forward to leaving her (not on her own, hubby will be here (he works nights) but it isnt the same ...)
post #14 of 32
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by cloud_shade View Post
Your story inspired me to have a biopsy done on Odo's lump. His is near his spine and above his left hip--it's hard to find some of the time as it seems to disappear in certain positions. My vet had found it once before, and we thought it was just a lipoma and left it alone, but since Odo has been limping (due to arthritis), I'm wondering whether the lump could be affecting his ability to walk. Anyway, he's scheduled for a biopsy on April 5th. I thank you for sharing Minstrel's story, and I hope you have lots of happy, healthy time left together.
Thanks for your support.
I will be thinking of you and Odo, especially on the 5th!
Please let me know how you both get on?
sending an to watch over you both!
post #15 of 32
Originally Posted by faerie View Post
why didnt the vet mention it to me? Could it be her age? When she was under having the lump removed (well what they could) surely if they could have amputated, they would have called me?
couldn't really say - might have been.
your head knows you aren't letting her down... but your feels that you are
post #16 of 32
I will definitely keep you posted on Odo. Have you asked the vet why the option wasn't presented? There could be a good reason she wasn't a candidate--finding out might help easy your mind.
post #17 of 32
I would certainly ask why, my cat was 13, and it was purely the arthritic hips that prevented the op, although if it had been an option, I would have been wary, as she would have been a much harder patient than my 11yo the year before.
post #18 of 32
Thread Starter 
An update for you...

I took Minstrel to the vet last night to get her stitches out (and her collar off) ... when we were waiting in reception the nurse came over to see her, the nurse couldnt believe how well she looked, how vocal she was.. I just thought it was because she hadnt seen her since the day of the op and didnt think about it much more.

When the vet called us in, she said that she had operated on the Wednesday, but she hadnt thought my angel would have made it until the following Tuesday !!(she had been off and we had seen a different vet on the Thursday and then on the Saturday when she got her drain out) she said she had come in on the Tuesday expecting to hear she had gone!

Yesterday was the first time she had seen her...I just stood there dumbfounded, it did explain though why she didnt want to give her a 14 day antibiotic injection ... she felt her leg and asked if she was walking ok, if she was getting upstairs ... I told her she was running up the stairs 2 at a time, she was jumping on the sofa AND on the bed, she jumps on her chair at the kitchen table too (yes, she has her own chair at the head of the table!!) she had even jumped on the pc desk!

The vet was amazed, said she couldnt believe how well she was doing, she was really happy with her, felt her leg and said it was smooth, she couldnt feel any new growth (HUGE sigh of relief) I decided to bite the bullet and ask about amputation (was worrying in case I had put her through the wrong op, or even a wasted op....)

The vet explained that the tumour is at the top of her hip next to her pelvis ... there was no way they could amputate, that when she was being operated on, if they could have amputated they would have ... Minstrel would have coped fine ... even at nearly 15 she wouldnt have had any qualms!

The vet asked if she was eating - answer like a horse, drinking? - like a fish (she is eating loads of dry food and the heating has been on constantly for her so not overly concerned) the vet even hugged her!! said she had put on weight too!!

Anyway, back to the stitches and collar, she cant really attack her stitches but she has worked out a way to 'scratch the scar' with the collar and has been lying on the wound side and pulling herself along the carpet been catching them on the collar, as a result, has pulled 2 of the stitches a bit ... vet doesnt want to take them out now until Monday (vet was worried in case the scar pulled more and maybe opened over the weekend when they werent around)

between hearing what could have happened and being a bit dissapointed about her not getting her stitches out (us scratching her neck for her isnt the same I guess) had been a bit deflated, then I think, she is a wee fighter and give her a huge hug again!!!
post #19 of 32
what a great report! i'm glad the vet explained why they didn't amputate.
post #20 of 32
Aww, glad she is doing well, and that does explain why the vet didn't want to amputate. Fingers crossed she continues to do well.
post #21 of 32
Thread Starter 
Minstrel got her stitches out and her collar off tonight !!!! Thank goodness, she was getting soo depressed!!!

Vet wanted to see her walking so put her on the floor, like the true lady she is (use the term very lightly) she turned her back on the vet, flicked her tail up in the air (just about hit the vet in the face!) and sauntered to the door with the good old 'sway of the hips' !!! was soo proud of her!!

she came home, ate loads, had a really looooooooooong wash and scratch (fur flying everywhere) then she lay down and went to sleep. She was purring that much you could feel it in her stomach!!! She is happier, which means I must be doing my job right!

am going to go to bed now, get, hopefully, more than the 4 hours sleep I have been averaging over the past 2 1/2 weeks!!!

just wanted to thank you guys for all your thoughts and well wishes, I know she wasnt cured, but she is happy and thats all I can ask for right now

post #22 of 32
it is so lovely to hear a happy outcome! too often it is quite the opposite but not this time! well done minstrel for having the strength and determination to come through this.

heres to many more happy and healthy years for you and minstrel!
post #23 of 32
Late into the thread but it cought my eye and thought I would read on! You did the right thing by having her operated on and she is happy now! Hopefully its a slow growing cancer and that she has many many years ahead of her! You deserve a pat on the back! You've been a real trouper through all of this! Good for you!!
post #24 of 32
Aww, glad to hear she is doing well so far, if I remember rightly from reading about sickle cell tumours when it was suspected with Tiger, it is a slow growing tumour, and very slow to spread as well, so fingers crossed for her.
post #25 of 32
Thread Starter 
hi guys
its just to let you know, Minstrel went to the bridge a few hours ago. The cancer came back as big as ever, the vet said tonight it had spread ... I was there when she went to sleep, she was calm, peaceful, (she didnt purr though which upset me) I know she is in a better place, it should make me feel better, it doesnt though ... I know too, she would never have intentionally broken my heart ....
I will post in the 'bridge' section later, just, am home alone right now (now really alone) and I am trying to tidy her toys away ... on the pc, in her room .......
post #26 of 32
I am so, so sorry for your loss. You did your best to give Minstrel some wonderful extra weeks that she wouldn't have had! What more could a loving 'Mom' do!

My heart and thoughts are with you
post #27 of 32
I am so sorry that the cancer came back, but she is free from pain now and had a wonderful life with you. RIP little one.
post #28 of 32
So sorry about your Cat.
post #29 of 32
I am so sorry about minstrel.
I just read your thread and was really upset to hear of your loss.
RIP minstrel x
post #30 of 32
anything high in calcium to streanthen the bones so that she can support himself. hope that helps.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cat Health
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Health › Am I doing the right thing?