Tumor in lung

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rossi11
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Tumor in lung

Post by rossi11 » Mon Sep 05, 2016 5:58 pm

Hello,

Four weeks ago I was devastated to lose one of my cats Sky aged 13 due to heart conditions. Then yesterday our vet confirmed that Storm (aged 13.5) has a mass tumour in his lung and 99% sure it's cancer due to the xray results.

Storm has been diabetic for 5 years and injected twice per day. He is a beautiful and loving boy and we are totally shocked by this news. We only found this out due to his constant coughing thinking it was furr balls.

My partner and I have decided not to put him through the trauma of chemo or any further testing. However, our vet has left us with very little information regarding sings of end stages of lunng cancer or what we should be doing now.

Does anyone else have experience of this and give us an idea of what to expect?

Thanks for taking the time to read this post.

Ross

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Crewella
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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by Crewella » Mon Sep 05, 2016 6:07 pm

I have no direct experience of lung cancer in cats, though I have lost cats to other forms of cancer. I just wanted to say how sorry I am to hear this, and that I agree with your decisions. Just make the most of the time you have together and keep a close eye on him - cats are very good at disguising the fact that they are in pain, so it will help that you know him well and will be able to spot any small differences in his behaviour. At some point, I'm afraid you will have to make 'that' decision, which will be tough but lots of us here have been through similar and will be here to advise if and when it comes to that. xx

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by rossi11 » Mon Sep 05, 2016 6:23 pm

Thank you Crewella for taking the time to reply. It's much appreciated and I will take your advice onboard re: small signs. ☺

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Ruth B
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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by Ruth B » Mon Sep 05, 2016 6:35 pm

So sorry to read this and I think you have made the right decision, give him the best time you can for as long as he has.

I can't help with experience, the only one of the cats i have had to put to sleep due to cancer had it in her abdomen, and it progressed extremely quickly. By the time we realised anything was wrong it was already too late and she was pts the next day. She had had a dental about 6 weeks earlier and the vet had given her a good check over before the anathetic as she wasn't a young cat and he wanted to make sure it was as safe as possible. She was then fine for about 4 weeks before seeming a little under the weather, but it was only on the last day did she really seem ill.

I've also lost a cat to diabetes (we couldn't time the injections and food around work at the time, timings have eased off since then), and one to old age. In all cases I knew when the time came to call it a day. So look after him while he is happy, and I think you will know with out doubt when the time comes.

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by MarySkater » Mon Sep 05, 2016 6:44 pm

When my Bridie was ill, the symptoms were rather nebulous - she was lethargic, and didn't have much appetite. At first I put it down to warm weather (she was long-coated). But after a couple of weeks, she wasn't any better. I took her to the vet, expecting it to be something wrong with her digestion. They kept her overnight and took her from my branch surgery to the central surgery for x-ray. Then they phoned me to tell me about the tumour. I don't think they said it was actually lung cancer - it was a large mass in her chest which was pressing on her lungs and preventing them from working properly. It wasn't operable, it wasn't going to get any better, and I had to make the decision over the phone to let her go. It was a shock, as she was only 6, and I hadn't expected it to be anything serious. I wish I could have been with her, but I couldn't easily get to her (no car) and I don't think anything would have been gained if I'd said I wanted to take her home for a while first.

It is difficult, to let them go at the time that's best for them, rather than best for us.

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by rossi11 » Tue Sep 06, 2016 3:31 pm

Thank you also to Ruth and Mary for your advice and taking the time to message. Storm went back to the vets today for an antibiotic injection which is much easier than giving him tablets. The vet today was far more informative and agreed that chemo etc would not be a good suggestion as Storm is diabetic. We will continue to monitor him at home but for now he is a happy boy and being given lots of love and attention.

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by issiandarchie+68 » Tue Sep 06, 2016 4:11 pm

MarySkater wrote:When my Bridie was ill, the symptoms were rather nebulous - she was lethargic, and didn't have much appetite. At first I put it down to warm weather (she was long-coated). But after a couple of weeks, she wasn't any better. I took her to the vet, expecting it to be something wrong with her digestion. They kept her overnight and took her from my branch surgery to the central surgery for x-ray. Then they phoned me to tell me about the tumour. I don't think they said it was actually lung cancer - it was a large mass in her chest which was pressing on her lungs and preventing them from working properly. It wasn't operable, it wasn't going to get any better, and I had to make the decision over the phone to let her go. It was a shock, as she was only 6, and I hadn't expected it to be anything serious. I wish I could have been with her, but I couldn't easily get to her (no car) and I don't think anything would have been gained if I'd said I wanted to take her home for a while first.

It is difficult, to let them go at the time that's best for them, rather than best for us.
I had much the same experience. My wee black cat Armand had always been a little wheezy but then started to cough, otherwise showing no other symptoms apart from bringing up clear fluid from time to time. I took him to Vet for his booster, asked him to listen to Armand's chest, he heard a rattle, took him for x-ray and said come back in a couple of hours. The 'phone was ringing as we walked through the door, Armand had been given oxygen and a mild sedative, he quietly died. He was 11yrs old. X-ray showed a massive tumour filling his wee chest, pressing on his heart and he was drowning, his lungs filling with fluid. It's a terrible shock, only that morning he had eaten a full breakfast and chased his ball, so I do understand your heartbreak. Cat's are very good at hiding illness, as I learned 4 weeks later when I lost Cody, pts aged 8yrs.
Rossi, as the others have said, it's the little things that accumulate until there is no mistake the time has come. But for now, he is happy and well loved, so it's not time yet, still lots of loving to give and receive.

Issi

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by rossi11 » Thu Sep 08, 2016 6:04 am

Hi Issi - sorry to hear about Armand and Cody, sounds very similar to what we are experiencing with Sky and now Storm. Thanks for sharing your experience as we are finding this difficult to accept that Storm is really ill. He looks normal and the only sign is his coughing, although this has became less with his antibiotics and diuretics. This is the only medication (apart from his insulin) that we have decided to give him. I guess it's now a waiting game and each day we will continue to monitor his breaths per minute.

Ross

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by MarkB » Thu Sep 08, 2016 9:27 am

Hi Ross,

Sorry to hear about Storm, I lost my 17 year old, Kylie, to cancer in July. Her was totally different though - it started in her paw. The affected toe was amputated. At the time, they x-rayed her lungs and said there were only a few miniscule dark patches, which are quite common in older cats and that I should keep an eye on her respiration. The change in her breathing was very noticeable within a couple of weeks. Although her tumours were small, they were secreting lots of fluid and one of her lungs had partially collapsed. My vet consulted with another vet at the surgery and they agreed that it wouldn't be fair on her to drain, as they would start filling again. sadly we had to let out girl go that day, before she became too uncomfortable

Hers was Adenocarcinomo.

PS - When I was advised by the vet to measure her breathing once a week, on a follow-up visit to check her paw, a nurse said that she wouldn't bother measuring, as anyone that knows their cat well, will know when their breathing is laboured.

Good luck

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by rossi11 » Wed Sep 14, 2016 12:06 pm

Hi Mark,

Many thanks for taking the time to share your experience. Sorry to hear about Kylie, it's totally devastating when one of your family passes. We miss Sky so much and now have to deal with Storm being ill.

I'm so glad you mentioned about the breathing.... We have been monitoring Storm on a daily basis but his breathing changes quite regularly. For now he seems happy, still eating and active. I reckon one day we'll experience a sharp decline and know when the time is right to stop his suffering. In the meantime, I pray each day to God that if healing is not his will, then Storm may pass in his sleep without distress.

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by greenkitty » Sun Sep 18, 2016 12:21 pm

In March last year I lost Hector to a brain tumour, we spent weeks treating what we thought was an ear infection only to discover it was so much worse. On the Wednesday the vet called me with his scan results and we discussed the options, surgery with a 50/50 chance of survival as it was in such a sensitive place. Hector was not a well cat, he had battled the cat flu virus for years and was a poorly boy, so I decided against the surgery and that I would look after him at home but worried that I wouldn't know when the time was right. I let the specialist know and my own vet resumed care for him, the following Tuesday I woke up to find he'd pee'd blood into the litter tray, he was constantly hiding under the bed and hardly eating a thing. We had a cuddle and I just knew it was time, he'd had enough, the twinkle had gone from his eyes and he looked ill. So later that day he was PTS in my arms. I don't once regret the decision I made, I had a lovely card from the specialist after saying Hector was so poorly he felt I had made the right decision. Just trust that you know Storm and that he'll let you know when he's not feeling so great.

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by rossi11 » Sat Sep 24, 2016 10:47 am

Hi GreenKitty - thanks for sharing your own experience and I'm sorry to hear of your loss, Hector sounds like he was a tough wee cat like Storm. I'm finding this really difficult now as people (including my vet) keep telling me "you'll know when it's time". I'm so confused about this... Similar to Hector, Storm has a different look in his eyes. I swear sometimes he is so sad and all I want to do is cry. He is still eating, drinking and going to the toilet, However, his coughing is progressively becoming worse and he seems to be shaking his head a lot. He's lost 1 kilo in the past two weeks so we've been advised to lower is diuretics each day. I'm in a really difficult place right now... If I PTS just now, then I'd feel I'm taking his life away unnecessarily.

Thanks for reading,

Ross.

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by Kay » Sat Sep 24, 2016 11:35 am

there is a positive side of these awful decisions, because you will not be taking away his life when the time comes - you will be taking away his pain and suffering

as for when, all I can say from my own experience is watch him when he can't see you, because when a sick cat interacts with a beloved owner he may well hide his pain

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by Crewella » Sat Sep 24, 2016 8:28 pm

Kay is so right (as always), hard as it is you do need to look at things that way. I have been exactly where you are now, with the same worries and questions, as was told 'better a day too early than a day too late', which I found a great help. People kept telling me the same thing, that I'd know when the time was right, and in spite of all my concerns I did find that was exactly what happened. We had lots of ups and downs, but there did indeed come a time when the bad days were outnumbering the good and I could just see that they were tired and had had enough.

Sadly, your lovely boy is on the way out anyway, all you will be doing is allowing him to slip away peacefully instead of lingering feeling sick and miserable. It's the last act of love and kindness that we can do for them. It's a sad time, though, and so hard - I'm so sorry. (((hugs)))

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by Mayday21 » Sat Sep 24, 2016 10:18 pm

Thinking of Rossie & Storm and sending ((((hugs)))) & prayers.

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Re: Tumor in lung

Post by Cussypat1974 » Wed Sep 28, 2016 10:29 am

I'm so sorry to read of your sad news. I have lost cats and humans to various types of cancer.

Last year, my old lady Minnie (she was about 20 years old) had a recurrence of a mammary tumour. She had had one removed three years previously and to be honest, was lucky to get three years. The mammary cancer spread to her lungs in the end, and we let her go peacefully.

Minnie was doing great up until the day we made the decision..... Eating, cuddling, even playing (not bad for any 20year old cat eh?). The morning she stopped eating, we had her euthanised. We had been watching her very carefully for signs up to that point. Her mammary tumour didn't seem to be giving her any pain at all,Manichaeism can often be the case. As the cancer affected her lungs, she coughed (but not a huge amount, considering) and the last day I noticed her breathing had become quite laboured (a lot of effort required, so you could see her sides moving more than is normal, if that makes sense), and she was reluctant to move. She had progressively lost weight despite eating, but was not emaciated, just underweight.

Those are the signs I saw in Minne, so they may help you monitor your cat. Each one is different, as is the progression of cancer in each individual patient, so I would second Crewella's advice to watch carefully for any signs of discomfort, pain or anything unusual.

Sadly, you will eventually have to make the call, but I do know it is helpful to have a clear plan in your mind about when you plan to draw the line. xxx

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