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Old 07-16-2019, 04:38 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Mast cell tumor

We discovered a pea sized lump on Lucys chest. The vet took a sample to test and said it is a mast cell tumor. Im trying to decide if it needs to be removed or not. She is 2 1/2, eating and acting normally. Has anyone had experience with this? Any help would be appreciated.
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Old 07-17-2019, 09:14 AM   #2 (permalink)
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Michigan
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If it is in a location that allows for removal and the vet thinks he can get it all, go for excision. The best chance we can give hedgehogs at surviving cancer is to try to remove it fully. Do it sooner than later. Sooner so that it is still small and hopefully hasn't spread.

With that said. Should the tumor come back or the vet cannot get clean margins with the excision, discuss treatment options with your veterinarian for palliative care. I had a hedgehog live for almost a year with an MCT that we couldn't remove. Treatment for her changed over time, so you will need to work with your veterinarian.

A couple of topics you can ask about though:

A combination of benadryl/tagamet has been used in some cases. MCTs can sometimes release a large dose of histamines, which can cause serious problems. These can help combat that.

Steroids. Prednisone has been used to help slow the growth of MCTs. We also tried a long term steroid with my girl. triamcinolone. Its a steroid that lasts for 3 weeks once in the system, so has some risks due to that. But we saw significant shrinkage from the dose we gave her. Sadly the tumor had already caused other problems at the point we tried it that the hedgehog couldn't survive.

I have no personal experience with this one, but in more recent times I have talked to a couple of people who tried Palladia with their hedgehogs. Palladia is an RTK-Inhibitor that is FDA approved for MCTs in dogs. Their vet's tried the drug with their hedgehogs and both reported that the MCTs growth drastically slowed. I don't think either were one them for long as the MCTs caused other issues and required euthanizing of the hedgehog to prevent further suffering.

Again the medication options I've listed were used as the MCTs were not candidates for safe removal and the hedgehogs were put in palliative care.

Please ask questions, and good luck with whatever treatment path you choose. If possible, please keep us updated on what you decide and how it goes.

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Old 08-01-2019, 11:22 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Join Date: Feb 2017
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Default Update

Lucy went in last week to have the lumps removed. All went well and she is healing nicely, she just got her wheel back and was quite happy about that. The vet said that the larger lump was cancerous but she was able to get all of it. The smaller lump was fibrous but could have turned cancerous with time. She gave her a clean bill of health. Hopefully there are no repeats.
Thanks for all of your help and encouragement.
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