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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 22277
Experience:  I am a small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats and am happy to discuss any questions you have.
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We have an elderly cat with a suspected lymphoma booked in

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Hi. We have an elderly cat with a suspected lymphoma booked in for an ultrasound on Monday and would like some advice please
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
She is 15 so are unsure whether to put her through any procedures. We originally took her in due to weight loss, lethargy and loss of appetite and her coat starting to look bad. She has lost a further 0.25kg in the past 3 weeks. She was also sneezing/coughing. She was put on a antibiotic for a respiratory infection but this has done nothing. She was diagnosed as hyperthyroid and is now being tried on Felimazole. On her return to the vet yesteday a mass in her stomach was discovered on physical examination - this was either not present or missed 3 weeks ago. The vet thinks it is a lymphoma and has suggested an ultrasound and a needle procedure for lab results. My question is what is the likelihood that this is a tumour and what else could it be? If it is a tumour we will not put her through surgery or chemo and would perhaps just ask for a steroid to make her comfortable for however long she has. Your advice appreciated thanks.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help.

Again I do apologize that my colleagues could not aid you sooner, but wanted to touch base with you.

With regards ***** ***** question, if there is a mass in the abdomen that the vet is sure isn't a gut blockage (less likely at her age) or stool in the GI, then it is highly likely to be a tumor. There are very few things that can appear in the abdomen and feel like a mass (especially as an enlarged normal organ would just feel bigger not mass like). Enlarged lymph nodes certainly can and this is why your vet is suspicious of lymphoma. That said, we can see masses associated directly with other organs (liver, stomach, etc) and those too can feel as you have described. So, those would be our main concerns here given what they have felt and her age. And while an ultrasound will tells us where the mass is coming from and a needle aspiration will give us an ideal if it is cancerous; you thoughts about palliation are reasonable. Especially if chemo (the treatment for lymphoma) isn't an option. So, in this case, we need to weight the benefits and risks. For a scan and needle aspirate, the risks are low but if we are just going to treat conservatively with the aim of keeping her comfortable, then these aren't wholly necessary. You could still have a scan (which is very non-invasive) just so you know where this is arising from and thus what it is likely to be; but you could decline an aspirate with a view to just keeping her on steroids/pain relief if needed to reduce its size and try to keep her comfortable for as long as we can do so.

Kind regards,

Dr. B

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Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Many thanks for your professional input it's greatly appreciated. I think we are probably leaning towards just keeping her comfortable until the time comes.

You are very welcome, my dear.

I am glad I could be of aid and wish you both the best,

Dr. B.