James Jacobson: One of the types of cancers that you talk about in the dog cancer survival guide is lymphoma. First of all, I will start with you Dr. Dressler. What are the signs and symptoms that a dog guardian might see if the dog has lymphoma?
Dr. Demian Dressler: Lymphoma is a strange cancer and that lymphoma is starts as a spread cancer. Usually doesn’t form a single bump. Lymphoma many times is discovered by veterinarian during a physical exam or they feel the lymph nodes which, or can be located underneath a jaw or in front of the shoulders or on a legs or on the groin are swollen and those feel like bumps. This is sometimes a guardian will notice this too, they’ll come in to the vets and they’ll say to me, “Well, Dr. D. what are all these bumps underneath my dog’s chin or I feel this bumps in the back legs or these types of things. These bumps can swell many times without the dog actually showing signs of illness that would be things like decreased appetite or vomiting or diarrhea or thirst changes and these types of signs. So, typically with lymphoma you’ll see one or the other or both. In other words, swollen lymph nodes or some changing behavior that would let you know that your dog is not feeling well.
James Jacobson: Dr. Ettinger?
Dr. Susan Ettinger: Yeah, I think lymphoma is as Dr. Dressler said a unique cancer and that it’s systemic that it spreads throughout the body. It is one of those cancers were once your veterinarian has made the diagnoses, I encourage you to get in into specialist as quickly as possible, ’cause it’s really, it’s a little scary in a sense of it. It is a pretty rapidly progressing cancer and without treatment, most dogs only live on average a month. On the flip side, in my opinion, it’s one of the more treatable cancers and that treatment, the basis of treatment is chemotherapy. Dogs live well and they live longer with treatment in on average will live well over a year, 13 or 14 months. So, it’s a rapidly progressive cancer but in my opinion a very treatable cancer, but it’s one that you wanna make a rapid decision and you wanna get in and see a specialist sooner rather than later.
James Jacobson: Dr. Dressler, any final thoughts on lymphoma.
Dr. Demian Dressler: Lymphoma like other cancers should be treated by looking at the whole tool box, the entire array of treatments. Lymphoma is not one where we use surgery often because the cancer cells are spread throughout the body. They start in the lymphatics and they are moving around the body, so we don’t really have a mass to remove. We also sometimes will use radiation from time to time, chemotherapy is the foundation of conventional treatment for lymphosarcoma and we must include to really get maximum survival advance, your maximum life quality also diet, and apoptogens which is substances that turn on cell suicide in cancer cells, and the other full spectrum approaches which can really help us and which are outlined in The Dog Cancer Survival Guide.
James Jacobson: A lot of information on lymphoma if your dog has lymphoma in The Dog Cancer Survival Guide. Dr. Ettinger in New York and Dr. Dressler in Hawaii, thank you both for being with us.
Dr. Demian Dressler & Dr. Susan Ettinger: Thank you.