Tonight we had a consultation with an oncologist to discuss Casey’s condition. The good news is that we have options.
The doctor explained that osteosarcoma typically occurs as a long bone tumor with treatment being amputation of the affected limb followed by chemotherapy. Since Casey’s tumor is in her upper jaw, treatment would include removal of the affected portion of the upper jaw followed by chemotherapy. Sounds horrible doesn’t it? Well believe it or not, dogs adapt relatively well and cosmetically there would be little impact. Not that we’re entering Casey into any dog shows any time soon.
The first step, before removing anything would include a set of chest x-rays to determine if the cancer has metastasized in her lungs. If it has, there would be no point in doing the surgery and treatment would then shift to palliative radiation to slow the growth of the cancer and relieve the pain from her jaw. If the chest x-rays are clear then our next step would be to consult with a surgeon and have a CT scan done to determine the amount of bone affected by the cancer.
So, what if we don’t do anything? The cancer will spread in Casey’s jaw and will eventually affect her teeth and her nasal cavity resulting in a lot of pain which we would have no way of gauging.
So, we’re proceeding with having the chest x-rays done this Saturday. Of course, we’ve told Casey that she’ll need to reapply for her line of credit since her account’s been exhausted by her previous procedures (hip replacement, knee surgery, heartworm treatment and stem cell treatment). Can we say high maintenance?