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Unread 05-12-2014   #1 (permalink)
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Default 2 Kinds of Cancer Simultaneously?

Hello everyone. This morning I got the call from the vet that all cat owners dread. Cancer. Our old-man cat spent four days hospitalized last week, because of jaundice and anorexia. Radiographs looked good, and an ultrasound showed an enlarged liver and pancreas (but no masses). He was diagnosed with pancreatitis and cholangiohepatitis. He's doing much better now, though I still worry that he isn't eating quite as much as I'd like.

Anyway, on his last day at the vet he had a liver biopsy, with both a needle aspirate and a surgical biopsy. This morning I got the call from the vet that the results show he has liver cancer. Weirdly, one of the biopsies came back positive for lymphoma and the other came back positive for carcinoma. My vet said he is going to try to get the pathologists to talk to each other and figure out whether he has 2 kinds of cancer, or decide which kind he actually has. Hopefully we'll know soon.

Has anyone else had any experience with this? We lost a cat to metastatic lung cancer a couple years ago, but there was never any question what it was. I can't seem to find much about cats with 2 forms of cancer at the same time, it seems unusual (though primary liver cancer is apparently pretty rare itself)?

My research is finding a possibility that the needle aspirate misdiagnosed the lymphoma (I wish I'd asked which diagnosed which). Apparently cholangiohepatis and other chronic inflammations can look very similar to lymphoma. Has anyone had this happen before?

Sorry for the long post, I just can't stand sitting around not knowing, so I research like a madwoman. Unfortunately, I remember the vet commenting on a "nodular looking" place on the liver during the biopsy, so I'm not really hopeful about our boy's prognosis.
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