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Old 06-15-2008, 04:40 PM
 
104 posts, read 436,713 times
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i am thrilled to hear of your positive results with IMRT as our dog also has nasal adenocarcinoma and we are considering the same treatment. i notice that you are in santa barbara. i am wondering if you did your therapy in ventura where we have found a great doctor who uses IMRT. I would love to know if it is the same doctor but don't know if i can say who on this site. (this is my first time visiting, let alone posting). can you give me this info?
thanks.
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Old 06-15-2008, 05:39 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
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Tallmomma,

I would say that the vet you found must be Dr. Ayl at VMSG. I do not know any others using the IMRT as when I first did my search I was only seeing IMRT offered at some of the Vet schools. Dr. Ayl is excellent and from a google search I did on him, I would say he is probably one of the best in So. California. He also seems to feel as I do that quality of life is more important then going for a cure.

Did you have a biopsy done yet? If so do you know what type of cancer it is? Dash has adenocarcinoma. I did have a CT done before I decided on the IMRT as if it had already spread I do not think I would have done any treatment. When we found the cancer Dash was not having any nose bleeds with the exception of a a sneeze that produced a little blood twice in the same weekend.He was just panting all the time, restless at night and if he did sleep he snorted, not snored but snorted . The weekend before he started the IMRT he did get a bad nose bleed but I figure it may have been a scab from his biopsy coming off as he has not had another one.

When my vet scoped him and did Xrays he felt the cancer was being caught early as there was no bone involvement that they could see and when Dr. Ayl did the CT he also felt we were catching it early.

That fact made my decision more difficult as I was thinking if I went with the definitive treatment maybe he would live his full life span but then I wondered what the cost to him would be? 20 doses of radiation will come with bigger side effects so I went with the palliative which is only 5 days and then Dr. Aly threw in the IMRT option with that, I figured that would be best as it would be minor side effects and would improve quality of life which it has. I am going to contact Dr. Ayl next month and get Dash started on the antiangiogenesis protocol.

I will warn you the treatments are a bit strange as they are using a human facility after hours and you are not allowed inside. You park in the back parking lot and a tech comes out and gets your dog when it is his turn and returns him to your car when he is done. You do not see the vet at all during radiation and if you are lucky Carlos will be the tech you deal with as he was great and very good at answering questions. The first night takes about 1.5 hrs and after that it is suppose to be 30-45 minutes thou on our 3rd night it was almost 2 hrs as Dr. Aly was there and wanted to do more films and no one came out to tell me so it was a bit worrisome and others were wondering what was happening as they were past their scheduled time and no one had come out until about 1.5 hrs then they told the others they were behind but no one said a thing to me.

Dash is now 5 weeks post IMRT. He gets his eye drops for his dry eye and is finally getting use to it so does not fight me so much now. He has a runny nose this past week which since it is just the left side I think is a side effect to the radiation. Outside of that you would not know anything is wrong with him.

I do hope your dog has as good of an experience as we have had, as I said I think Dr. Aly is great. Feel free to ask any more questions and post and let us know how it goes. Jan
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Old 06-15-2008, 08:10 PM
 
104 posts, read 436,713 times
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our dog was originally diagnosed with adenocarcinoma 19 months ago. we went the whole nine yards - surgery followed by 20 sessions of radiation (there was, by the way, no IMRT available at the time) hoping for 2 1/2 - 4 years before the cancer came back. we were not so lucky. after tillie the lab started sneezing and snorting again recently, we did a CT scan and biopsy and found out that the cancer had, indeed, returned.

our choices now are to repeat the original treatment, go for the palliative radiation or do nothing and let the disease take its course. the first idea was never an option, particularly since its effectiveness was disappointing, to say the least. so we've been deciding if and when to do the palliative radiation. we sought out dr ayl who had been in charge of tillie's radiation the first time but had since moved to the ventura location. he told of the IMRT option and how the side effects would be minimal, the goal being to make the dog more comfortable not less comfortable. i am happy to hear that dash is doing well after his treatment. we are going to try the same with tillie and hope to get her many more months of a good life.

thanks for sharing your experience.
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Old 06-25-2008, 02:31 PM
 
104 posts, read 436,713 times
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Default dashdog...?

i have been trying to schedule tillie's IMRT for 10 days now and dr ayl's office seems unable to coordinate with the physicist at the human place. i cannot tell you how high my frustration level is. i notice that you mentioned a few times that his office did not call you back. just wondering, do you remember how long it was from when you told them you wanted to go forward with the radiation to the first day of radiation?

and how is your cute pup doing?
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Old 06-25-2008, 11:51 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
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Default Tallmomma

It took about 8 days and yes like you I was frustrated and yes it was due to Dr. Ayl needing to coordinate with the physicist. I think the physicist is for humans and he does not always see that person when he is there. Anyway he finally called and the raditaion started the next night so I had to find someone fast to work the start of my shift for the 2nd night.

Dash seems to be doing fine. I just picked he and Jazz up from boarding as I have been up in Oregon and Washington the past 8 days. A few days before I left Dash had alot of yellow boogers that came out of the left side of his nose evertime he sneezed so I was a bit concerned . I had my trip planned way before I learned he had cancer and I do board at my vets where there is one woman in the kennels that knows my dogs well and likes them so I knew she would keep a good eye on him. She says the nasal snot has stopped so I hope she is right. He seems to be breathing ok and is his crazy self which is good.

I hope you hear from Dr.Ayl real soon so you can get going with the IMRT. Good luck and let me know when you do start.
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Old 06-26-2008, 10:02 AM
 
Location: Louisiana
4,599 posts, read 5,289,834 times
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Default Lump in my throat

I just finished reading this whole thread and now I have a very big lump in my throat and no more makeup on my eyes!!

Jan - I hope your Dash continues to do well.

Tallmomma - Keep your chin up. Hopefully you hear from the tech soon.

To all the other that have lost their furbabies, I am so sorry. My boy Ben has a whole in his heart. I found out when he was 3 month old and he is now 2 1/2. He is on 7 different meds. He does really well and is a very happy boy. I don't think I will have to make the decision that some of you have had to make. More than likely his heart will just give out and he'll leave me. The vet said he could go tomorrow or live a long life. I pray for the long life.

I am going to keep that poem just in case.
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Old 06-26-2008, 10:19 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
4,922 posts, read 11,226,013 times
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Thank you, Dash went to his play group today and played with his buddies. He usually likes to only play with the other males but today a couple walking an airdale let HER come play for awhile and I think Dash was in love He is 7 weeks post radiation now.

I hope Ben lives a good long life. Sometimes dogs and people beat all odds so you just never know.

Last edited by Dashdog; 06-26-2008 at 10:54 PM..
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Old 06-27-2008, 10:39 AM
 
104 posts, read 436,713 times
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Default Canine IMRT in california?

it seems that the physicist who is supposed to work our IMRT plan is MIA with no word of when/if she may reappear. it is quite unbelievable really. so we are looking for another facility that does veterinary IMRT in california.

we have heard there may be someone in san diego. anyone know of this?

thanks.
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Old 06-27-2008, 07:33 PM
 
Location: Santa Barbara CA
4,922 posts, read 11,226,013 times
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Tallmomma,

Sorry to here about the problems VMSG is having. Wonder what happened to the Physicist? I am pretty sure the person works for the human facility so that is weird that suddenly no one can get ahold of them.

Have you checked with Veterinary Speciality Hospital in San Diego? phone # 858-875-7500. I think they have some connection with UC Davis so if any one down in that area has IMRT I would think it would be them or that they might know if anyone does.

I will keep my fingers crossed that you can find someone to get things started soon. Jan
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Old 06-29-2008, 03:51 PM
 
104 posts, read 436,713 times
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The physicist has returned! Huzzah! we will start radiation on tuesday unless there is a problem with the dry run they will be doing monday evening. it'll be tues/wed/thurs then a 3 day weekend for all, returning to finish monday and tuesday. tillie;s spirits and behavor are still good, a few more buggers over this weekend. hopefully the IMRT will help that for awhile. i'll keep you posted. thanks.
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