Jill had a mass on the back of her leg. Over time it didn’t change much and then it began to grow rapidly. At some point a rapidly growing mass gets so large the overlying skin can no longer support it. The mass was about the size of a baseball when we saw her. A few weeks later it was almost softball sized. The skin over the mass was open and the mass was leaking fluid. Jill, as most pets will do, was licking the area and making the fragile skin even worse.
Jills parents came to see us to talk about what could be done.
After a physical examination, bloodwork and a discussion about what the procedure would entail they elected to try surgery.
I tell these clients this; the mass is no longer manageable. She cannot live a long and healthy life with a mass like this. The idea of euthanizing a pet because they can no longer support the tumor growing on them is not something I want a pet parent t o have to decide. I always encourage people to try the surgery. Try to see how they do through surgery and after surgery. Don’t give up on a pet because they are old, and need a surgery. Take the chance, i usually encourage people to try. I will say that in a long time of practicing medicine I have not lost 1-2 % of the patients we have done surgery on. Those are some very encouraging odds.
Estimates are given for all procedures. We do our best to keep within this. If we go over we offer payment plans. In short we do everything we can to make this a treatment plan that both the parents and Jill will benefit from.
Here is the breakdown of her surgery;
Pre-op examination included blood work
day of surgery;
blood work, CBC, full chemistry, thyroid panel, urine, fecal $190
radiographs $150 (used to look for evidence of metastasis to the lungs).
i.v. catheter, fluids, fluid pump, surgical pack, anesthesia $300
induction propoflo $60
laser use for mass removal $200
mass removal $250
suture packs $120
antibiotic (in hospital and to go home) $55
This story is posted with Jill’s families permission. I thank them for letting me share it. I hope it benefits others.
The biopsy came back as a mast cell tumor.
I was the surgeon on Jills case.