High count of mast cells in cat's blood. High suspicion of mast cell nesoplasia :(

YasTheCatLady

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I posted earlier about by 15 yr old cat who was diagnosed with hyperthroidism yesterday. Me thinking that is bad enough but it could be worse! Turns out it is worse. His vet sent off his blood work to a hemotology lab as she does every time she takes his blood and this time it came back saying he has a high mast cell count. The vet found no lumps and bumps on his body at his check up and he doesn't show signs of any benign conditions like pneumonia that could cause a high mast cell count so sadly, it looks like he may have an internal mast cell tumour. I can't believe it. It was bad enough being told he has hyperthyroidism yesterday after him showing no symptoms but now this?! It feels like a bad dream. The vet is gobsmacked too. His blood levels of everything else are fine and he is still eating fine and a healthy weight and energy levels.

Next step is repeat blood test in a fortnight and if the levels are still high then scans/ biopsies are going to be done

I can't get my head around it. I hope to god its something benign but I don't know. The vet said she could see it going either way and didn't want to worry me but didn't want to leave me in the dark either.

If worst comes to worst and it is an internal mast cell tumour, do you guys have any experience with this? My last cat had lymphoma and sadly it was too late for him.

I honestly can't believe I was so worried about hyperthyroidism 12 hours ago and now have this to worry about!

This is his report -
mast cells - 1.522 x 10^9/l

"Platelet numbers appear within reference. The red cells show spiculing. Rouleaux appears to be mildly increased. No evidence of haemoparasites. Several to many large finely granular mast cells are present.

Marked mastocythaemis is present. Whislt mastocythaemis of varying degree has been associated with inflammatory disease, in the abscence of an inflammatory leucogram, there is a high index of suspicion for mast cell neoplasia. Are there any masses palpable? Lymphadenopathy? Organnomegaly? Consider imaging"

His vet hasn't felt any swollen lymph nodes and his abdomen isn't swollen

Thanks guys
 

Mamanyt1953

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Well, the good-ish news is that no masses are palpable, and his lymph nodes are not swollen, so this may be VERY early stages of this, which makes all the difference in the world! PLEASE let us know how he's doing, and when you have new information! Lighting a candle for you BOTH!
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YasTheCatLady

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Well, the good-ish news is that no masses are palpable, and his lymph nodes are not swollen, so this may be VERY early stages of this, which makes all the difference in the world! PLEASE let us know how he's doing, and when you have new information! Lighting a candle for you BOTH!
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Thank you so much! I will keep you all posted. We are going to call the vet again tomorrow for more info. I couldn't really take it all in today, I was such a state. If it is that he has, I just wish I could take it off him and have it instead. Here's hoping if it is cancer, it's been caught early. He has such a thorough vet! He only went in for dental surgery two days ago and they found a problem with his thyroid and now this.
 
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YasTheCatLady

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Hi everyone. We spoke to the vet again today. We asked if his recent gum infection or fatty lumps on his back could be the cause of his mast cell levels and she said it was very unlikely. She didn't want to come out and say it's definitely cancer but said it's likely that or inflammation somewhere in his body but not sure where/what condition it could be. He needs to get his thyroid levels stable before he can have any more tests done so nothing we can do for 2/3 weeks. I think it's blood work and ultrasound she is starting with. I'm beside myself with worry. Can't stop crying and just feel so hopeless and helpless. I hate that we have to wait for tests. I understand we have to wait to get his levels down because it would be dangerous to sedate him otherwise but my god, the waiting is the worst part.
Thanks again everyone. Will keep you all posted every step of the way
 
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YasTheCatLady

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She also said she's getting in contact with her oncologist colleague as well for help so it's looking even more likely that it's sadly cancer :(
 

FeebysOwner

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He needs to get his thyroid levels stable before he can have any more tests done so nothing we can do for 2/3 weeks. I think it's blood work and ultrasound she is starting with.
I guess the vet means more blood work to check his thyroid level, as opposed to other counts? If blood work that she wants done is to look for other things besides the thyroid level, ask her why that couldn't be done now. And, ask her as well about the possibility of getting an ultrasound done with just a mild sedation. I know of some cats who have had ultrasounds done without any sedation at all - but, maybe Rambo doesn't fit into that category.
 
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YasTheCatLady

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Yeah she wants to check his thyroid levels again and well as potassium as that was on the low side and he's on a supplement for that now. We asked about an ultrasound with light sedation or none at all and she said no, it would be too risky at the moment while his thyroid is still high and he may need a biopsy done so sedation would be needed.

I can't cope with all of this. In the last year my stepdad died suddenly, my dad is now on end of life care and now my beautiful boy most likely has cancer. Just so hard to process that this time last week I thought I had a healthy cat who needed some teeth out to then be told on Thursday he has hyperthyroidism and then the next day that he very well could have cancer. I just can't get my head around it. To look at him, he looks a picture of health. Even hyperthyroidism was a shock since the only symptoms he has was hyper and eats a lot but he's been like that since day one. That's nothing new for him and his thyroid levels 6 months ago were fine.

Please keep your paws crossed that it's not cancer or if it sadly it, that we can do something about it. I can't lose him any time soon 😭💔
 
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YasTheCatLady

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Hi everyone, I thought I would give an update. What a week it has been! We got Rambo's mouth biopsy results today and it was a mast cell tumour. Even the vet was surprised at the results because oral mast cell tumours are so rare! She doesn't think that one was the cause for his mast cell levels in his blood, she thinks its more likely he has it in his spleen and maybe its spread to the mouth or it just by chance happened to be in the mouth too as well as the spleen. We haven't done the abdominal scans yet due to his HT and wanting to wait a few weeks until his levels were stable but now given he has a confirmed mast cell tumour in his mouth, she says its worth the risk of getting in him for tests within the week. He will be getting FNA, chest x rays and ultrasound.

She is discussing with the vet oncologist what would be best - should she go in and fully remove the mouth lump that she biopsied? Or would chemo get rid of the remaining cells? She really thought it was just a polyp so she didn't cut out full margins and only sent it off at my request so she was as shocked as me when we found out it was a mast cell tumour. Then if we find anything in his abdomen, do we remove the spleen and then do chemo or do we just do chemo? So many questions. I will let you know how our appt goes tomorrow.

All the while, Rambo is absolutely fine. I weighed him yesterday and he is the same weight (5.5kg) that he has been for the last few years. He is still eating fine and is playful. He is peeing fine, his poop isn't black - its brown. No palpable mass on his abdomen and his abdomen doesn't feel full, hard or bloated. I did find a tiny spot on his skin that is getting checked tomorrow. Its absolutely tiny and hard to find but given he has a mast cell tumour somewhere now, we are suspecting this could be another. It looks so innocent and if it were on me, I would just say - "meh its a tiny spot" but I know skin mast cell tumours can look so innocent and still be bad.
 
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