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Mass in cat's chest?

Species: Cat
Breed: Japanese Bobtail
Age: 2-5 years
Hello,

My cat, a sterilized indoor-living Japanese Bobtail, is now 4 years old and has today been diagnosed with a "mass" in the Lung regions that is exercising pressure on the lungs and making breathing a little more difficult. To note is also the fact that he is FIV+ (however not Felv+). (All the levels of the blood test are still in the "normal" range!). As far as the Vet told me, the Mass is not in the lungs. it is in the front region and it is also pressing the wind-pipe toward the backbone (neck). I'am in posses of the the blood test results, the x-rays and the ecography of the mass (so that I can upload them).
Is there a way that allows me to upload them so that you can have a look at them and tell me exactly where the mass is?

The cat is acting as normal, even-though it seems to be more calm during the last days. He is still eating (about 80% of what he ate before).

My question is: what is the likelihood (in %) that the above mentioned mass is a "Malign tumor"? ... Could it be benign? In the case of a malign tumor what are the most advised ways to proceed? What's the life expectancy? Is the mass too big?

thanks


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Hi there. If you've got images or other information, you can email it to me at photos@askavetquestion.com. Thanks. I'll have a look at that and then respond more thoroughly,

Dr. Marie.


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Customer reply:

Pictures sent at photos@askavetquestion.com.


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

OK, thanks for sending the photos. I've taken the radiographs and added some labels to help explain what is unusual here:

fluid in cat's chest

fluid in cat's chest

What I can see in these xrays is that there is definitely something very wrong with Leo's chest. I can't tell whether the problem is fluid or is a mass. It's possible that he has something called a mediastinal mass.

In the top picture, the trachea is way too high. Something is pushing it up towards the spinal cord. Can you see where I have labelled the lungs to the right of the heart? Lungs should be a black color. Now, we should be seeing the same black color in front of the heart and we are not. Instead, everything there is white. Similarly, on the second radiograph, the area on top of the heart should be black and it is not.

This white area is either fluid or a mass. It is possible that the ultrasound image you sent me shows that it is a mass. I don't do chest ultrasounds. (I usually have to send the cat to a specialist for that), so I can't tell you much about the ultrasound images.

The tough thing here is determining whether or not this is something we can treat. Do you know if any test was done where a needle was put into the chest to determine if this is fluid? In a cat that is FIV positive, it is possible that this is a chest full of pus (infection.) However, if this were the case you would expect to see an increase in white blood cells which we don't have. An infection could be treatable.

But, if this is a mass then this is not good news. Most chest masses are quite serious. It is possible that some surgery could be done to explore the area to determine if there is a tumor that can be removed, but you would definitely need a specialist to do this surgery and it would definitely be expensive.

Unfortunately the only way to know if this is a cancerous tumor or one that is likely to spread is to actually get a biopsy of the mass which is hard to do in the chest.

I'm afraid that things do not look good from what you have shown me though. I'm very sorry for the bad news.

Dr. Marie.



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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.