Lymphoma accounts for approximately % of all canine neoplasia (formation In the absence of treatment, most of the dogs with lymphoma succumb to the. If your dog has received this diagnosis, you should be encouraged by the fact that there are several canine lymphoma treatment options. In studies of canine lymphoma epidemiology; boxers, Scottish terriers, Much of the information regarding efficacy of treatment for canine lymphoma has come.
Canine Treatment Lymphoma for
A diagnosis is often confirmed by aspirating a lymph node. This is done by placing a small needle into an affected lymph node and removing cells for microscopic evaluation. This is a relatively quick, painless, inexpensive procedure. If lymphoma is suspected in areas other than the lymph node e.
Chemotherapy is the treatment of choice for almost every dog with lymphoma. Surgery and radiation are occasionally options if a single, local tumor exists e. Most patients especially dogs are not feeling particularly sick at the time of diagnosis.
It may be tempting to put off treatment until the pet seems more ill. The goal of chemotherapy for animals with lymphoma is to induce a complete remission, by killing most of the cancer cells.
They do not have any signs of cancer, and all masses or lumps will have disappeared. They eat, drink, and run just as they did before they developed cancer. The length of remission depends upon many factors including the primary site of the cancer, how sick an animal is at the start of treatment and the extent of disease. Some of the cancer cells do survive in an animal in complete remission, but the numbers of these cells are too small to detect. Eventually, these few cells will grow and the cancer will become evident again.
When lymphoma returns, remission may be re-established in most dogs by restarting the original chemotherapy protocol, or by changing to a new set of chemotherapy drugs.
Eventually, the cancer cells will become resistant or insensitive to all drugs and the cancer will no longer respond to therapy. Although chemotherapy does not cure dogs with lymphoma, in most cases it does extend the length and quality of life. Keep in mind that these are average values. Each dog is an individual and will respond to treatment differently.
In effect, it is a permanent state of remission. While this is a possibility, it is more constructive and realistic to focus on increasing quality of life. It will depend upon how the cancer is behaving, how sick an animal is at the start of treatment, and any abnormalities in organ function especially important are changes in liver and kidney function. The most effective chemotherapy protocol is a multi-agent chemotherapy; several different drugs vincristine, Cytoxan and Adriamycin are alternated in order to reduce the chance that the tumor cells will become resistant and to reduce the risk of side effects.
Other protocols include chemotherapy given once every 2 or 3 weeks either oral or IV , although remission rates and average survival times may be decreased. It is very uncommon for lymphoma to be cured, but treatment can make your dog feel well again for a period of time, with minimal side effects. This is called disease remission, when the lymphoma is not completely eliminated but is not present at detectable levels.
Without treatment, survival times for dogs with lymphoma are variable, depending on the tumour type and extent of the disease, but for the most common type of lymphoma the average survival time without treatment is 4 to 6 weeks. With current chemotherapy regimes such as the so-called Madison Wisconsin protocol, the average survival time is approximately 12 months.
It will also make subsequent treatment with chemotherapy less successful. What does chemotherapy involve? Following this assessment, chemotherapy doses are calculated and the drugs are administered either subcutaneously under the skin , intravenously into a vein via a catheter, or orally.
Chemotherapy with the Madison Wisconsin protocol involves your pet having chemotherapy treatments weekly for nine weeks with a one week break , then fortnightly up until 6 months i. At 6 months, if your dog is in remission, therapy will be discontinued. Chemotherapy can be restarted when a patient relapses i. Patients are individuals, so the response varies from case to case, and because of this, all patients receiving chemotherapy are carefully monitored and protocols adjusted to suit the individual.
What are the potential side effects of chemotherapy and how can they be minimised? Side effects can be seen because chemotherapy agents damage both cancer and normal rapidly dividing cells. Normal tissues that are typically affected include the cells of the intestine, bone marrow which makes the red blood cells, white blood cells and cell fragments involved in blood clotting called platelets and hair follicles. Hair loss is uncommon in dogs having chemotherapy, but it can be seen in certain breeds that have a continuously growing coat, such as Poodles and Old English Sheepdogs cats rarely develop hair loss, but may lose their whiskers.
Hair usually grows back once chemotherapy is discontinued. Damage to the cells of the intestines can result in changes in appetite or stool consistency and occasionally vomiting. Damage to the bone marrow reduces blood cell production, particularly infection fighting white blood cells neutrophils.
Steroids are often used in combination with chemotherapy. These medications can make patients feel that they want to eat and drink more especially during the first week of therapy when doses are usually higher and given every day. Patients should not have their access to drinking water restricted, but it is important not to increase their food intake, as excess weight gain can be problematic.
The increased thirst is associated with increased urination, so patients may also need to go out to pass urine more often. Epirubicin , another chemotherapy agent, can cause damage to the heart muscle over time. The more doses your dog has, the greater the risk. For this reason, we will carry out checks on the heart before the drug is given for the first time and at various points during the treatment course. Heart complications are extremely uncommon and your dog is at much greater risk if the lymphoma is not treated.
Different types of lymphoma may be treated with different chemotherapy drugs. For instance, the most effective drug for cutaneous lymphoma is thought to be lomustine CCNU. The veterinary oncologists and oncology residents at the PUVTH will help you decide on a chemotherapy treatment protocol that is appropriate for your dog. Most chemotherapy drugs are given by intravenous IV injection, although a few are given by mouth as a tablet or capsule. Patients are usually dropped off at 9: Most dogs tolerate chemotherapy well, much better than humans typically do.
Although some dogs do get sick from chemotherapy, serious side effects are uncommon. The most common side effects include loss of appetite, decreased activity level, and mild vomiting or diarrhea that persists for one or two days.
If serious or unacceptable side effects do occur, it is important that you talk to one of our oncology doctors or staff about this. We can recommend symptomatic treatment to lessen the side effects of chemotherapy. In addition we may recommend reducing the dose of chemotherapy the next time it is to be given. Unlike people, dogs usually do not lose their hair when treated with chemotherapy. The exceptions to this rule are poodles, Old English sheepdogs, and some terriers — these breeds may lose their hair while receiving chemotherapy.
Hair growth should resume once chemotherapy is discontinued. In rare instances, dogs are apparently cured of their lymphoma by chemotherapy. Unfortunately, most dogs with lymphoma will have relapse of their cancer at some point.
A second remission can be achieved in a large number of dogs, but it is usually of shorter duration than the first remission. This is because the lymphoma cells become more resistant to the effects of chemotherapy as time goes on. Eventually, most lymphomas develop resistance to all chemotherapy drugs, and dogs with lymphoma die or are euthanized when the cancer can no longer be controlled with chemotherapy.
The median length of survival of dogs with multicentric lymphoma treated with UW chemotherapy is between months. We are currently conducting multiple clinical trials for dogs with lymphoma at Purdue. Varying degrees of financial support are available to owners who agree to allow their dogs participate in these clinical trials.
To determine whether your dog may qualify for a clinical trial, please ask your dog's primary care veterinarian to call and ask to speak with a member of our Canine Lymphoma clinical trials team, or you may contact our Canine Lymphoma Clinical Trials Coordinator, Ms.
If you have trouble accessing this page because of a disability, please contact PVM Web Communications at vetwebteam purdue. College of Veterinary Medicine. Purdue Comparative Oncology Program.
Canine Lymphomas Canine lymphomas are a diverse group of cancers, and are among the most common cancers diagnosed in dogs. What causes lymphoma in dogs? What are the most common symptoms of canine lymphoma? How is canine lymphoma diagnosed?
Whether your dog was recently diagnosed, currently undergoing treatment, or you're looking for information about disease prevention, you will find the following . More than 30 types of canine lymphoma have been described, and each the current standard of care in the treatment of canine lymphoma. If your dog suffers from lymphoma, I'm sure you've heard the news that CBD can help. The most common treatment for canine lymphoma is chemotherapy.