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Cat: Kitty

Type of Lymphoma:
Mediastinal Lymphmona

FeLV Status:

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Kitty's Case Study  

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Story: I found Kitty (aka Max) as a stray in Queenstown, New Zealand 10 years ago as a two year old (vets guess of his age) and he is the most amazing cat ever, with such a cool character. Kitty was diagnosed on the 14th July 2008 by ultra sound guided fine needle aspirate/chest X ray. He was outwardly very healthy up until the 7th July when we noticed he had a stridor with this breathing. I took him to his vet and they told me probably nothing, but perhaps heart disease, why do vets guess when they have no idea? They do not do this in the human medical world! They prescribed anti-biotics and that was that!

I still had a gut feeling it was more, so went for second opinion and the same diagnosis again. The stridor remained and I really wanted to get to the bottom of it, so I found a new vet and told him to do any test possible, but please get to the bottom of this. On this particular day my partner was flying to Germany for 5 weeks and the diagnosis came only hours before he left ... 6cm x 6cm in his chest cavity - what a devastating diagnosis. I was in complete shock, it really did feel like a nightmare at the time. But he once he started the mad-wisconsin protocol things starting looking a little brighter and I felt there was some hope for Kitty! By the 6th week the tumour had shrunk to nothing!!! Amazing - complete remission. He just finished week 11 and is doing so well and we are so happy that he is still with us and enjoying the New Zealand spring time sun :) He is such a special cat and there as not a second thought in regards to doing anything (whilst being humane/ethical) to give him more time, it was not his time to go! We have had a couple of ups and downs so far (after the 5th vincristine chemo treatment he had toxic poisoning and had fluids for 5 days and high temps but got through it), but the positives of chemo completely outweight the bad and I would recommend it to anyone who is contemplating it.

Outcome: Updated January 2009 - Kitty is doing very well! He has one more treatment of the 6 month Madison- Wisconsin protocol to go (doxi) and then we shall move to monthly treatments and then perhaps further extend them. He is fast approaching the 6 month mark from when he was diagnosed and we are so thrilled with his progress. He is spending his days soaking up the New Zealand sunshine and everyday is special with him - we are so happy that we chose the path of chemotherapy, it was undoubtedly the right choice for Kitty. One piece of advice I would offer if you are thinking of treating your cat with chemotherapy is find the right vet ~~~ We had two in the first 5 weeks of Kitty's treatment and then third time lucky found the perfect vet and team. Should we not have changed vet's then it is likely Kitty may not be here with us today (as they were not thorough, checking his kidney function etc and not taylor-making the treatment to suit Kitty and his age, kidney function etc and I found they they did not have the necessary experience pertaining to do cancer treatments). We could not ask for a better vet and this had made the whole ordeal a lot easier to cope with, he is completely thorough and very compassionate towards Kitty. So be picky with whom you choose as your vet ~ you obviously want the best possible treatment and care for your feline friend and thus do not be affraid to offend vets should you want to move to a clinic/vet with more oncology experience/ability with chemo and risks.

Outcome: 12th October 2008 - Kitty has finished induction of madsion - wisconsin protocol and doing so well! Very happy - he is spending his days sleeping in the sunshine and eating like a horse! :) He has chemo every other week now as we have done the induction phase, he is very happy about that no doubt!

- By Nadia Kitty's Mom -
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