My heart is breaking

Food, Fitness and how to keep them healthy.

Postby satanscheerleader » June 16th, 2006, 4:52 pm

:( :groupHug:
I am so sorry you are going through this. The best of luck in whatever route you decide to take.
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Postby pocketpit » June 16th, 2006, 7:53 pm

Well the lab results are in and indeed she does have lymphoma. She's a stage two, substage A right now as far as we know. Lymph nodes in front and rear are enlarged but we don't think she has any involvment in her internal organs. I'm hopefully having an ultrasound done on Sunday to confirm this. She's still eating and acting fairly normal though I can tell she's not 100%.
My husband and I actually noticed that she was much more quiet than normal lately but attributed it to age and the new foster dogs in the house. She knows that more dogs mean more rotational time and is very patient about it as long as she still gets her usual amount of the princess treatment. I had even contemplated the fact that it's been a year since bloodwork was done and that I should do that.
I plan on spoiling her even more rotten than before if that's possible but she's going to have to retire from agility which is not going to make her happy. Though I got frustrated with myself when we competed and stopped for a while, we had plans to finish her open title this year and so she still goes to her excellent level class during the week for fun. I think she could still handle it for now but once we start chemo I don't know. I guess we'll play it by ear.
So yes, the plan is to at least start the chemo and see how she responds. We'll use the Wisconsin-Madison protocol which involves the use of Vincristine, Asparaginase, Cyclophosphamide, Doxyrubicin along with Prednisone. I'm told that 80% of lymphosarcoma patients respond to chemo with a very large number of them extending their life by a year. Since as far as we know it only involves her lymph nodes at this point that's also in her favor. And it's not going to be as expensive as I thought since I can run my own bloodwork and buy the medications at cost. So I think I should at least try it. If she does not do well with it then I'll stop and just see how long the Pred will make her comfortable.
Thank you everyone for your support, it means a lot and we'll definately need all the prayers and well wishes we can get.
Thank you Purple and Mali for your input and insight, it's been most helpful.
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Postby luvmyangels » June 16th, 2006, 8:03 pm

Oh I am so sorry to hear the results. You are in my prayers.
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Postby Purple » June 16th, 2006, 9:21 pm

There has been much success with the chemo protocol you are going to go with, especially since you are so early in the battle.


From my Cornell papers:
stage 5b, t-cell.
Thoracic and abdominal lymph nodes, cranial mediastinal mass, pleural effusion, liver, spleen, small intestine and bone marrow.
He was started on doxorubicin based chemo protocol, with half body radiation. Since starting his chemo protocol, his pleurl effusion has resolved, and his breathing has markedly improved.

As you can see, and as I know now, my Pete was just too far advanced.
My heart goes out to you, I will be sending positive thoughts and strength your way.

If you ever need to talk, or whatever, I can pm you my number.
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Postby Jenn » June 16th, 2006, 9:29 pm

:hug3: Sorry to hear that. We'll all be pulling for you and her both!
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Postby mnp13 » June 16th, 2006, 11:49 pm

I'm so sorry to hear you were right....

If she loves agility, why not let her continue for a while? I know with people getting rid of stress and keeping the spirits up makes a big difference during serious illness. Can you re-home the fosters to remove some stress?

Is surgery to remove the lymph nodes a possibility? Would that help at all? (I don't know anything about lymphoma)
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Postby cheekymunkee » June 17th, 2006, 12:54 am

I sooo wish you would have been wrong. It does sound like you caught it early & there are treatments & hope. Hold her close & stay strong. We're all rooting for her!! You're such a good mom, she is lucky to have you
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Postby pocketpit » June 17th, 2006, 3:32 am

If she loves agility, why not let her continue for a while? I know with people getting rid of stress and keeping the spirits up makes a big difference during serious illness. Can you re-home the fosters to remove some stress?

Is surgery to remove the lymph nodes a possibility? Would that help at all? (I don't know anything about lymphoma)


I will definately let her "play" at agility as long as she seems to be in good spirits and motivated to do it. I think she'll tire more easily than normal so it will have to be tuned down. I'd really love to finish her open title but I also really worry that she won't be up to it. Mentally I know that she's there but I don't know physically how she's going to hold up.
I'd love to re-home the fosters but honestly don't know anyone in the area that is not up to their eyeballs in dogs already. I just have two, Ulhan and Bo. Ulhan may have a prospect or two keep your fingers crossed. We've re arranged the household to make her the center of attention once again and aim to keep it that way.
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Postby Malli » June 17th, 2006, 3:51 am

I am so sorry :(

Please keep us updated as you can.

If you want to talk any more you are welcome to pm me. I see quite a few seriously ill animals at the hospital (we do 24 Emergency care and outpatient stuff) so I think I've developed a pretty good perspective on things.

I will keep her in my thoughts

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Postby satanscheerleader » June 17th, 2006, 4:12 am

:hug3:
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Postby SisMorphine » June 17th, 2006, 9:29 am

I am so sorry :(
"All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another." -Anatole France
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Postby Maryellen » June 17th, 2006, 10:30 am

i am so sorry about this news. you and Brooks are in my prayers. keep her happy, and enjoy her.
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Postby turtle » June 17th, 2006, 12:07 pm

I just saw this thread... I'm so sorry. I hope the chemo will give her more time and you did catch this pretty early.

Enjoy her and I'd let her do the agility as long as she is up to it and having fun.
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Postby blkngldbabe » June 17th, 2006, 2:05 pm

Hello..so terribly sorry to hear the news..good thing is you caught it before it really got its claws in. As long as your keep her comfy (which sounds like you've already done) just enjoou each and every minute you have with her and try not to dwell too much on the inevitable. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your baby. Stay strong...she needs you.
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Postby rockermom » June 17th, 2006, 2:26 pm

Im so sorry to hear this news. I was hoping to come back and hear you were wrong. Spoil her rotten. saying prayers for her.
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Postby Leslie H » June 18th, 2006, 12:48 pm

I'm so sorry to hear this, though I'm glad that you caught it so early, and that the costs aren't as bad as they could be.
I agree w/you letting Brooks' energy level and mood determine what you do w/agility. It would be a shame to deprive her of something she enjoys. My thoughts are with you.
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Postby Violet » September 29th, 2006, 2:00 pm

Dawn..how is Brooks doing?
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Postby pocketpit » September 29th, 2006, 7:20 pm

Well she was doing good up until this week. Her white cell count shot through the roof three weeks ago but she was still her typical outgoing, I feel good self. It's been incredible really that she's done so well. Everyone is mystified as to why but short of getting winded with physical exercise she's not missed any meals, had vomitting or diarrhea (except the one time I gave her too much raw lamb) and is still very happy.
After her chemo this week however she's had a rough time. She's scheduled for another ultrasound and splenic aspirate on Sunday to see if the cancer has now invaded her spleen. She's still eating and the chemo put a huge dent in the white cell count but she' been dragging all week and it's apparent that our time together could very well be over soon :( She's slightly anemic, gets winded easily and up until today I swear a turtle stood one hell of a chance of beating her in a foot race.
Today she's a bit perkier but I'm not getting my hopes up. We took a trip to a local spot on the Sound this Wed. just in case it was our last chance at an outing together in the nice weather.
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Postby Violet » September 29th, 2006, 7:51 pm

:( I was hoping for better news..I know you have been somewhat hopeful through all of this. You know im here if you need anything at all. Give Brooks a gentle hug from me..i love that girl.
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Postby Purple » September 29th, 2006, 8:36 pm

Sending good thoughts your way.
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