Still no answers

The veterinary called me this morning, and – they still do not know what the x-ray show. The radiologist could not exclude metastases on the lungs, but could not tell that they are that for sure either, so we will go to CT, computed tomography exam. They should call me from the animal clinic tomorrow to book a time for that hopefully on Monday.

If Jossan has metastases, we will not operate. If she does not, we will.

That sounds so simple. It is really a simple decision to make when we know the answers, but it is not easy. It is hard on our hearts.

It takes so much time, all the exams, we are in the limbo. But she does not know, she is fine. ❤

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That tiny little bad thing

Jossan’s teeth extraction was a walk in the park. She will be happier now without the last bits of inflammation in her mouth.

After her operation last year (after we discovered that the cancer was back and the new growths were removed), I felt a tiny little hard lump where one of the tumors was removed directly after the swelling went down; in one arm hole, next to the rib cage. It was actually the only of the places where the pathologist said in his rapport that not all of the cancer cells seemed to be removed and the risk of metastases from there or local recurrence existed.

So I followed it and also the vet checked it out, but her teeth were more urgent to fix. Also, it did not seem to grow, that little thing. But I have checked it regularly. It could have been a scar tissue, or not.

Now I am sure that the lump is growing. I messaged Jossan’s oncologist this morning. He moved to another city, but is kind and said I can call him or PM him via Facebook about my baby whenever. ❤ That is a veterinary that really cares about his patients!

I just know it is a recurrence. It is that place, same feeling like the ones removed, tough still smaller than the ones removed before.
Since Jossan is feeling super top great, the plan is to x-ray her and then if there are no metastases to the lungs, operate and remove the growth, in order to minimize the risk for spreading. She will be continually on her COX-2 inhibitor medicine to slow down the cancer also. It would be a tiny cut and operation, maybe 1-2 cm long, not deep at all, the lumps (I think it is one, maybe two, one like a couple of mm in length, the bigger one maybe like max 7 mm in diameter) are directly under her skin, and she will have a fast recovery time.

Me and Jossan at one of our veterinary visits.

During the course of Jossan’s cancer, there was never any doubt in my mind what is the right thing to do. Jossan has such a lust for life and feels good, and her blood values are great. We will do anything in our power that veterinaries think is worth doing to help her live as good life and as long life as possible. I have a special connection with her and love her so much. And I would do that for any of my cats.

We got the time for x-ray in two days, on Wednesday afternoon. Hope there are no metastases yet, I hope so much.

 

Lazy Sunday

A lazy Sunday afternoon, I am reading on the sofa, Jossan is under the blanket. This night and morning she was also under my blanket in the bed. My ❤

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She is feeling well and we hope for spring to come soon so that we can have walks in the garden together.
Next week on Wednesday, a cat dentist will pull out a tooth that seems to be bothering her (FORL). We got okay for that, since all her recent blood tests are good, the cancer is seemingly under control at the moment, and we of course do not want her to have a toothache! Fingers crossed on Wednesday that all goes well with our Queen.
A cat friend’s Siamese girl, with the same bad type of cancer as Jossan has, was put to sleep 10 days ago. 😥 It has spread and took over her lungs with metastases so she was tired and could not breath without problems. She was operated and was on the same medication as Jossan for a few months, which prolonged her life a bit. But then it could not be stopped anymore. So tragic. My heart goes out to my friend.
I hope we will have much more time with Jossan, but I do not think about that much, we chose not to grieve in advance. We take every day as a gift and are grateful for it. And we live in the present. Like cats do. ❤

Not what we hoped for

Last Friday we got back the results from Jossan’s operation, and it was very bad. All three small tumours they removed were malign, two seemed to be removed in total, one not. And that one was in lymph nodes, which means that the cancer has metastasised. The tumor was very fast growing, also.

I felt completely shattered. It was Friday morning and I headed back to work after meeting the oncologist, Patricio Rivera, and getting the bad news, Jocke took Jossan back home. She was just happy and as usual.

She has no symptoms, since the cancer did not spread yet to her lungs or inner organs (well, not according to the recent x-ray, anyway). When it spreads there and grows, when she gets symptoms maybe like coughing and being tired and not her usual self, that when it starts getting bad, and that is when I will have to let her go, before she starts to suffer. Not now. But my baby will never suffer. I own her that final grace. But I will not think about that now. We will get her regular checkups to see how it progresses and hope for the best.

My working day was not great, I cried and worked, cried and worked. I was so sad. We did not get or asked for any prognoses, since no one can tell really what will happen now. She will not get chemo, since there is no chemo that can preserve her good life quality, and cure her. Only maybe prolong her life a little, but worsen life quality. Still, she will get this COX2 inhibitor, an anti-inflammatory medicine, Metacam, which is good for her, and can stop or slow down the progress of cancer. She will also get special food for cancer patients – a lot of fat and good protein, minimal carbs. One of the dry food that are best in that composition is Royal Canin Intestinal, according to Patricio, we got her that. I’ve also ordered wet food of same kind, and she also eats Bozita and Sheba chicken file and egg yolk at times. We will not give carbs to the cancer!!!

(Yes, she gets food served in bed. Leroy is helping her)

I woke up very late at Saturday, but I was not as sad anymore, I was determined to spend this time we have left together the best we can. Jossan is my big love. We may have weeks or months or years left together, I do not know. No one knows. And you actually never know for anyone how much you have left. We live now, in present and I am happy to have her in my life. I love her so much. ❤

Jossan’s results

We have already received the results from the pathologist. To sum it up – it is the least bad kind of bad news.

Jossan has cancer, as we expected, and we seem to have detected it early, as we hoped. It is also not a very aggressive tumor (at this point), and is of type that gives the best prognoses. It also did not seem to have spread to the surrounding lymph nodes.

In about 5 weeks she will undergo another operation where her other chain of mammary glands will be removed. After that we will check her regularly and hope for the best. If we detect another lump somewhere, we’ll take it from there. The aim and hope is that all the bad cells will be removed and that she will live a long and healthy life after that. ❤

I have attached the report if one is interested (click to enlarge).

Report after the first operation

Report from the first operation

More to read about mammary gland cancer can be found here:
http://www.uoguelph.ca/~rfoster/repropath/mammary/Mam_fel/Mam_cat.html
and here (breast cancer):

http://pathology.jhu.edu/breast/grade.php

Mammary glands cancer in cats has similarities to breast cancer in humans. I did not understand all I read in the report at first, but I have looked it up, understood it all, and got a bit relieved. Talked to the veterinary later, she confirmed what I already interpreted from the report. She also told me that it is almost never this good bad report they get back from the pathologist, usually the tumours are faster dividing and the grade is higher. They progress fast, it is easy to miss them, and they are detected later that one could hope for.

We will take care of our dear girl, and hope she will get cancer-free soon! Today I found another lump on her other side that will be operated in December. Mammary gland cancer tends to be bilateral in cats. I am very nervous, but I cannot rush anything. They cannot operate two sides at a same time, and also, after the first operation, she has to heal and the skin should not bee too stretched so it could burst after the next operation.

Jossan and Leroy

Jossan (closer) and Leroy (farther). Yes, she is similar to her dad in her looks, only slender and feminine 🙂

I have many mixed emotions, and sometimes I cry, sometimes I am optimistic, all in all I am pretty shaky. But above all I am happy that I have her and that she is recovering well from the first operation.