Would you get lump removed on cat

My cat has had a lump for about 7 months. It's a lump on top of the skin rather than underneath. A bit like a wart but it's not a wart. I took her to the vet after finding it and they used a fine needle to take a sample and sent it to cytology but the results came back inconclusive. Took her again recently and she had a further sample taken but again it came back inconclusive. The vet is reluctant to advise me either way saying that removal is a risk due to her age and the general anaesthetic she would need. But if it's left and it is cancerous then that's also a risk.

It'll cost about £400 but hopefully insurance should cover it but as I'm on a year limited cover (due to her age they won't give lifetime cover on pet insurance). I only have until May to get it done if I want to claim.


Ultimately my main concern though is my cat and I can't work out what to do. Any advice please?

House buying timeline: (Already sold/staying with family)

8.2.21- offer accepted on no chain property 
10.2.21- solicitors instructed and EA sent memo of sale
22.2.21- broker submitted full mortgage application 
26.2.21- mortgage offer received 
4.3.21- solicitor letter received confirming content of my mortgage offer and that searches had been applied for
8.3.21- received property information form, fixture and fittings form and land registry plan. 

31.3.21-Home buyers report undertaken. No issues on survey and they agreed that it was worth the intended purchase price

6.4.21-Solicitor update to say still awaiting response to some enquiries

17.4.21-Letter received from solicitor with overview of findings so far with enquiries/respect of the property

24.4.21-Letter confirming searches back and content of searches, solicitors advise once final two enquiries are answered we can agree exchange dates

29.4.21-Chased solicitor to see if final enquiries are back, they advised they are still not. Spoke to EA who spoke to seller's solicitor and they said that they have had fresh new enquiries to answer from our solicitor and not to expect to hear until w/c 17th May. Conflicting info between both solicitors!

5.5.21-Contract/mortgage deed/land registry forms received for signing. Still no mention of these outstanding enquiries.

8.5.21- signed paperwork above posted 

12.5.21-Phoned solicitor, they have the signed forms but confirmed the seller's solicitor still haven't replied to the final enquiries

14.5.21-Final enquiries returned, completion date set for 21.5.21


Replies

  • JimmithecatJimmithecat Forumite
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    My cat is 15.5 and is having teeth removed under general anaesthetic next week - he has had blood tests this week (£88) to check his liver and kidney function and will also have sedation before the anaesthetic - the vet said that there is less risk involved with general anaesthetic now than there used to be but knowing the full picture before he is anaesthetised will be the best way to go.
    It is just for removing teeth - if it were a lump that was not necessarily cancerous I wouldn’t put him through it.
  • Enterprise_1701CEnterprise_1701C Forumite
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    Is she in pain, is she annoyed by it?

    If she is that old then surely the disadvantages of having it removed outweigh the advantages, she is surely not going to get too many more years as a result, and if the vet says the results are inconclusive then two tests on the same lump are unlikely to come back like that if the lump was cancerous.

    Personally, I think I would take a picture of it next to a something that would prove the size and repeat after a month, if there is no growth then I would not bother having it removed.
    What is this life if, full of care, we have no time to stand and stare
  • MovingForwardsMovingForwards Forumite
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    I had it done twice on one of my cats, only the first time it was the one side of her breast / chest / belly, then another the other side. She was 19 when I had to make another decision about a further op as that time it had gone internal as no where left outside, but I left her to enjoy what time she had.

    She bounced back after each of the other two ops and was older then yours with her 2nd one.

    I have no regrets about my decisions and if she would have been in pain / distressed I would have made a different decision the 3rd time.

    Only you can make a decision, with as much information from your vet to be able to make it. You know your own cat.

    Has she been scanned to get a better idea as to the size and if there are any others?
  • SensibleSarahSensibleSarah Forumite
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    I have exactly this situation with one of my cats - he's about 15 now. Lump about the size of a 5p piece appeared on his head about 3 years ago. He didn't seem to feel it or realise it was there. Vet said to just keep an eye on it and get him back in if things changed. Recently it has changed significantly - got hard, started weeping etc, and over Christmas has started to grow again so I'm taking him back to the vets next week (earliest they can fit him in). He's definitely feeling it now and isn't quite himself, although he is still active and eating fine etc. I don't think I want to put him through a major op but we'll see what the vet says. He's insured but probably only for a proportion of the cost due to his age/policy. Not my main concern though - I'll find the money if needed.

    Good luck OP! Let us know what you decide.
  • KiKiKiKi Forumite
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    amandacat wrote: »
    My cat has had a lump for about 7 months. It's a lump on top of the skin rather than underneath. A bit like a wart but it's not a wart. I took her to the vet after finding it and they used a fine needle to take a sample and sent it to cytology but the results came back inconclusive. Took her again recently and she had a further sample taken but again it came back inconclusive. The vet is reluctant to advise me either way saying that removal is a risk due to her age and the general anaesthetic she would need. But if it's left and it is cancerous then that's also a risk.

    It'll cost about £400 but hopefully insurance should cover it but as I'm on a year limited cover (due to her age they won't give lifetime cover on pet insurance). I only have until May to get it done if I want to claim.


    Ultimately my main concern though is my cat and I can't work out what to do. Any advice please?

    How old is she? My perception of 'old' for a cat may not marry with your vet's!

    It would be unusual for two tests to be inconclusive and for it to be cancerous, esp if it's been there for 7 months. (I'd also want to know what they are actually looking for through the histology - they won't test for everything.) Your vet should also be looking for other symptoms - weight loss, change in behaviour, other skin lesions and, depending on where the wart is on her body, other changes on her skin, as well as blood test markers. Is she FIV, or a carrier of the calicci or herpes viruses? Is she predominantly white?

    If your vet hasn't advised you of those, hasn't done blood tests, and isn't asking those questions, I'd get your lovely cat seen by a different vet, as those are things I'd expect any vet to do / ask me before coming to an inconclusive diagnosis.
    ' <-- See that? It's called an apostrophe. It does not mean "hey, look out, here comes an S".
  • amandacatamandacat Forumite
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    Thank you for the replies. My cat isn’t that old in my opinion, she is 10 but according to my vet and pet insurance quotes I got, this is classed as old.

    I asked for the details of the two cytology results to try and gather more information, the first one done a few months back found some mast cells that can be a flag for concern but as the vet got blood in the initial sample they believe this is why there were mast cells. The cytology advice was for her to have 2 weeks of anti inflammatory meds to see if it helped and my vet said as she had been on this for a week with no change this is why it wasn’t prescribed again. I saw a different vet more recently and they didn’t get any blood in the sample this time so no mast cells were in the second sample to cause concern. They did find spindle cells in the second sample but said these can be found anyway in a sample but they could point to cancer but no way of knowing for sure. The cytologist recommendation was to take a larger sample from the lump but the vet said as she would need a GA for this anyway and the lump is only wart sized, if I go down that route she might as well have it removed.

    Health wise she is fine, eating well, active and a healthy weight. It’s on the back of her neck so she can’t get to the lump but it doesn’t seem to be bothering her. They haven’t suggested any blood tests or any other scans, just the choice to have it removed and then tested to find out for sure. It initially was growing but seems to have remained the same for about 3 months.

    She’s a black cat, short hair rescue cat that I’ve had since she was about 4 months. No FIV or any other health problems.

    House buying timeline: (Already sold/staying with family)

    8.2.21- offer accepted on no chain property 
    10.2.21- solicitors instructed and EA sent memo of sale
    22.2.21- broker submitted full mortgage application 
    26.2.21- mortgage offer received 
    4.3.21- solicitor letter received confirming content of my mortgage offer and that searches had been applied for
    8.3.21- received property information form, fixture and fittings form and land registry plan. 

    31.3.21-Home buyers report undertaken. No issues on survey and they agreed that it was worth the intended purchase price

    6.4.21-Solicitor update to say still awaiting response to some enquiries

    17.4.21-Letter received from solicitor with overview of findings so far with enquiries/respect of the property

    24.4.21-Letter confirming searches back and content of searches, solicitors advise once final two enquiries are answered we can agree exchange dates

    29.4.21-Chased solicitor to see if final enquiries are back, they advised they are still not. Spoke to EA who spoke to seller's solicitor and they said that they have had fresh new enquiries to answer from our solicitor and not to expect to hear until w/c 17th May. Conflicting info between both solicitors!

    5.5.21-Contract/mortgage deed/land registry forms received for signing. Still no mention of these outstanding enquiries.

    8.5.21- signed paperwork above posted 

    12.5.21-Phoned solicitor, they have the signed forms but confirmed the seller's solicitor still haven't replied to the final enquiries

    14.5.21-Final enquiries returned, completion date set for 21.5.21


  • UKTigerlilyUKTigerlily Forumite
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    amandacat wrote: »
    Thank you for the replies. My cat isn’t that old in my opinion, she is 10 but according to my vet and pet insurance quotes I got, this is classed as old.

    I asked for the details of the two cytology results to try and gather more information, the first one done a few months back found some mast cells that can be a flag for concern but as the vet got blood in the initial sample they believe this is why there were mast cells. The cytology advice was for her to have 2 weeks of anti inflammatory meds to see if it helped and my vet said as she had been on this for a week with no change this is why it wasn’t prescribed again. I saw a different vet more recently and they didn’t get any blood in the sample this time so no mast cells were in the second sample to cause concern. They did find spindle cells in the second sample but said these can be found anyway in a sample but they could point to cancer but no way of knowing for sure. The cytologist recommendation was to take a larger sample from the lump but the vet said as she would need a GA for this anyway and the lump is only wart sized, if I go down that route she might as well have it removed.

    Health wise she is fine, eating well, active and a healthy weight. It’s on the back of her neck so she can’t get to the lump but it doesn’t seem to be bothering her. They haven’t suggested any blood tests or any other scans, just the choice to have it removed and then tested to find out for sure. It initially was growing but seems to have remained the same for about 3 months.

    She’s a black cat, short hair rescue cat that I’ve had since she was about 4 months. No FIV or any other health problems.


    Personally, i'd have it removed, 10 is a Senior but they easily live to be 15+, so 2/3 through their life if they die on the younger side. I had a dog with a lump, and she ended up needing it removed as it ulcerated & got infected.



    I'm sure at 10 they will do fine with anaesthetic, and they can have a pre op blood test to check all is well & go on a drip to help x
  • ArtytartyArtytarty Forumite
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    Fully agree with the above post.
    Plenty of good years left yet hopefully , to be lived without that lump.
    Norn Iron Club member 473
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