Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

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Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby Whynothmmmm » Sat Jul 11, 2020 7:22 pm

My little dude was just diagnosed with cancer. He has multiple lumps growing on his lungs. I am still waiting to hear from the vet about options (if there are any) but wanted to see if anyone here has dealt with a similar issue and/or if anyone has done chemo with their dragons.

Any feedback is greatly appreciated.

Thank you.
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby AHBD » Sun Jul 12, 2020 4:06 am

So sorry to hear this, I don't have any experience but just wanted to say that I'll be thinking of + rooting for your dragon. Hopefully someone has gone through this with their beardie and will relate their experience. One of the mods. here, Tracie [ username Drache613 ] is a vet tech. and may have some info for you. Best wished for your boy. What is his name BTW and if you get a chance,post some pics. If you decide to, here's how :

https://www.beardeddragon.org/useruploads/ Then use the XIMG to upload them
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby Whynothmmmm » Sun Jul 12, 2020 8:06 am

Thank you for your reply and thoughts. His name is Baby and he is the sweetest little guy. I am so sad for him.

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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby AHBD » Sun Jul 12, 2020 10:19 am

What a sweet looking dragon he is, he looks quite a lot like my boy Buddy. :) I'm sure this is very upsetting to you. Baby still looks well there, has the vet given a prognosis and do they feel that chemo will help ? Is your vet experienced with beardies and have they done this for any reptile before ? If you get a chance can you post the xrays here ? BTW I saw this article that mentioned that sometimes Petco gives out grants to help with reptile care, this is about a beardie with sarcoma.

https://cvm.ncsu.edu/bearded-dragon-off ... treatment/
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby Whynothmmmm » Sun Jul 12, 2020 11:19 am

I did not want to subject you the images I have of him looking unwell. For the most part he looks okay throughout the day, as he has been accepting the food that I offer via syringe and I have been injecting him with subcutaneous fluids.

He goes through these episodes of gurgling/coughing and spitting up blood and/or liquids. During these he looks very bad. This morning he experienced his worst one yet.

I do not have copies of his xrays or medical records yet but I will request them and share once available.

The vet is a exotic specialist and they actually have a team of specialists. I have another beardie who was prolapsing and had to have her reproductive organs removed and they did a very good job with her. I am not sure how experienced they are with chemo in reptiles though. They did mentioned that cancer/chemo treatments are still somewhat in its “infancy”.

Because Baby has a number of lumps on his lungs, and seemingly they grew quickly, the assisting vet indicated that chemo may not be successful. I am waiting to hear back from the primary vet today though to see if there are treatment options.

Thank you for the link. I saw that as well and will look into it further.
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby AHBD » Sun Jul 12, 2020 12:29 pm

Aw, I'm so sorry to hear that and my heart goes out to you in this predicament. Hopefully between you + your vets you'll figure out what is best for your little guy .
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby Whynothmmmm » Sun Jul 12, 2020 12:51 pm

Thank you. Your thoughts and kindness are appreciated.
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby WinFam01 » Mon Jul 13, 2020 4:31 pm

I'm so sorry to hear about your boy. He looks very sweet. How old is Baby?
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby Whynothmmmm » Mon Jul 13, 2020 5:19 pm

Thank you. He is only about 4.5 years old and is the sweetest little dude.
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby Drache613 » Tue Jul 14, 2020 12:36 am

Hello,

I am so sorry to hear about your dragon, that is so very sad.
When were you getting more information from the vet regarding treatment options?
I have known a few people in the past, who have done chemo or radiation on their
dragons with some success. Though, I can't say I have known anyone with a dragon
in which tumors or growths were involved in lung tissues.
Have they suggested nebulization of medications, at all? Does he have problems with
his breathing?
That is too bad Baby is so young. What type of diet does he eat?

Let us know how he is doing.
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Re: Cancerous Lumps in Lungs / Chemo

Postby Whynothmmmm » Tue Jul 14, 2020 6:46 am

Thank you Tracie,

Unfortunately, I am still waiting to hear from the vet. They only told me so far that the oncologist did not give many good options for him and she was not sure if I would be open to chemo/radiation. I told her if he was still alert, eating and seemingly strong and we thought it could help, then yes I wanted to consider it. She mentioned she would review with the oncologist again. So I am still waiting to hear back. The waiting is so tough though and their offices have been extremely busy so they are overwhelmed.

Nothing in regard to nebulization of medications yet. They really have not given me anything. I just have him on ceftazadime (which was started as they originally thought this was just a respiratory infection) and I am injecting him with subcutaneous fluids. I am also keeping him in a steamy room for 30 min/day (as suggested by the vet) to assist with his breathing. Other than that, I am just trying to keep him comfortable and support him through these episodes.

About once a day (some days not at all), he experiences a major episode. Cough/gurgling/gasping where he is clearly struggling. In these he tends to spit up fluid, sometimes blood, which the vet believes is coming from the growths. Sunday it looked like liquids from his stomach. Initially these episodes only lasted a few minutes, then up to a half hour...Sunday’s lasted 1 1/2 hours 🥺 This day it got so bad I really was afraid he wasn’t going to come out of it. Usually, the rest of the day his breathing is normal, maybe with a small “cough” here or there but his beard doesn’t turn black and the rest of his body language seems to indicate he is okay.

His diet before this was varied: mustard, collard and dandelion greens were staples. I grow organic flowers to add to his greens occasionally too (petunia, carnations, Johnny Jump ups). Organic veggies: peas, green beans, various types of squashes, sweet potato, cactus, etc. Organic fruits occasionally: raspberry, blueberry (his fav.), mango. Proteins are dubia roaches, Phoenix worms, occasionally horn worms, silk worms, wax worms and superworms.

Now though I am syringe feeding him a mixture of the Oxbow critical care and various kinds of organic baby food veggies. I just place some food on the outside of his mouth and he licks it up.

It is really hard because Baby is so young and otherwise was seemingly healthy. I would have never expected this.

Thank you for your comment on the successful chemo treatments. I have been reading through as much as I can but I cannot find much in regard to success or failures.
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