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Jill's Journey

Hopping her way towards a (hopefully) cancer free life three legs at a time

One of a Kind

Filed under: Uncategorized — rica55 at 4:00 pm on Monday, June 10, 2013

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One year ago this month, I brought Jill to the vet for an “infection” on her toe.  Everything seemed to turn upside down, topsy turvy real fast from there.  While we’ve been on our tripawd journey for almost 6 months, it’s been almost a year (celebration to come in a few weeks) that we’ve been on our Osteosarcoma journey.  To tell you the truth, I was so lost when I got the diagnosis, that I’m writing this post in the hopes that ONE DAY, it will help someone.  I know I have helped a few kitty tripawd pawrents, but one day, I hope someone who is in need of feline osteosarcoma information, even more specifically Giant Cell Osteosarcoma information, will find some hope here.

It is not a pleasant thing when a pathology report comes back and all the vets say to you, “we’ve never seen this before”, so now, one year later, I’ve chosen to change that school of thinking, and just call Jill “One of a Kind.”  She is, of course, one of a kind in many other wonderful ways, but this just adds to her unique wonderful kittiness.  When I was thinking about writing this blog post, I went to google some studies, to see what kind of information I could show, besides just saying: “OSA is rare in cats”, so to give you an example, in one study done in 2007  of the “Diagnosis and Clinical Outcome Associated with Surgically Amputated Digits” (85 cats in the study) the following was stated (GCTB = Giant Tumor of the Bone, what Jill has):

“Of note, were the 2 GCTBs diagnosed in this study. This is a rarely reported neoplasm in domestic animals, and few reports exist in cats.  The relative frequency of its diagnosis in the digits in this study was unexpected, as GCTB has never previously been reported in the digits of cats and is uncommon in humans. Only 13 cases of GCTB were seen in the hand in a retrospective study of 50 years of submissions at the Mayo Clinic.  Typically, this tumor is reported to occur primarily in the epiphysis of tubular long bones in humans and animals, and reported cases in cats originated in the femur, ulna, rib, and tibia.”  As I said.  One of a Kind.

So, when your pet is One of a Kind, you’re faced with many challenges.  The hardest being that sometimes you’re given many treatment options and the vets leave the decisions up to you with no data at all to back it up.  I was presented with this:

“We could only find 2 cats ever to have Giant Cell OSA and they were both in Germany and no follow-up information was done on them, so we do not know what treatment they were given.”  OK…..so what do I do?  Well, I was told, “we can do chemo or just keep an eye on her since she got good margins, but we really can’t make a good recommendation as to which is better, you have to decide what you’ll be able to live with”

Hmph.  From here, I decide to keep an eye on her.  Then 6 months later, she got the met in her leg.  Do I have regrets?  Mostly, no.  There are some days where I question my decision, but I can’t go back, so what’s the use in looking back.

Now I find myself one year later with more decisions being left up to me.  Metronomic chemotherapy, as far as they can tell, has not been given/studied in cats with OSA.  Since we know Jill’s cancer is a bit more aggressive than others, we want to give it a shot.  But her bone marrow seems to be having a hard time recovering from the IV chemo, so do we give her a type that is easier on the bone marrow?  Who knows?  No one…..

It’s a frustrating thing this One of a Kind business.  But it’s what makes my Jill who she is.  She doesn’t know about her diagnosis.  She’s never questioned my decisions about her treatment.  She hops around day after day living her wonderful, happy life.

Did I choose the right chemo?  Who the heck knows?  Should I have done chemo last June?  Who the heck knows?  Should we have amputated her leg last June?  Beats me!

One thing I do know the answers to is this: Will all my googling cure her?  No.  But I do have the hope that ONE DAY, be it 5, 10, or 50 years from now, someone will google “Giant Cell Osteosarcoma Feline” and my blog will pop up first, and my One of a Kind cat will help someoone out and give them some hope.

And now, because you can’t have a blog post without a picture, here is my One of  a Kind:

j


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9 Comments »

633

   Barret's Mom Heather

June 10, 2013 @ 4:44 pm   Reply

What a journey! I’m sure there will be others who find your information invaluable.

Isn’t it unfortunate how a routine vet visit can turn into something else so quickly? Barret’s first vet appointment in my saga was for a toe infection too.. except the toe infection (which was an infection from the groomer nicking his foot) was completely and totally unrelated to the lump in his armpit (I had assumed inflamed lymph node from infection).

I think that getting our stories out there is the best thing we can do for others who may be in our shoes later on. Thanks for sharing 🙂 Give your one-of-a-kind Jill a kitty squeeze for me.

634

   Michelle

June 10, 2013 @ 5:15 pm   Reply

Jill you are being a pioneer in this great journey. You are definately “One of a Kind” You will leave a great legacy so that others will have information where your mommy didn’t. We know you will do great on the metronomics and have information for someone else who wants to try it.
We love you and keep kicking “C” ugly butt.

635

   Karma

June 10, 2013 @ 7:00 pm   Reply

Way to go Miss Jilly Bean. You are one pawsome kitty kat! We love you!

Karma, Brendol, Adelaide, Aissa, Mathilde, and Morrigan

636

   virginia and dixie

June 10, 2013 @ 7:11 pm   Reply

hi jill and Erica – your post brought tears to my eyes. not only is jill a one of a kind kitty but you are a one of a kind kitty mom! Thanks for sharing your heartfelt posts with us other tripawd parents. and of course – hugs kisses and best wishes jill!

637

   benny55

June 10, 2013 @ 7:27 pm   Reply

testing 1..2..3..

638

   fourminipups

June 10, 2013 @ 9:06 pm   Reply

Jilly – Someday (probably soon!) you will be included in text books at the vet schools and what a great teacher you will be. They darn sure better include a picture!

You will give so much hope to any new kitty and their parent when they are able to read all about you.

You are a shining star!

639

   benny55

June 10, 2013 @ 9:26 pm   Reply

Okay, let’s try this again!

Was just trying to say that JILL learned how to be One of a Kind from her Mom!

You both are already seeing your legacy in action. JILL has already secured her position in veterinary medical journal and will reach out to others for a long time to come!

JILL has already made an impact on everyone who has the privilege of “knowing” her through this site. She is forever in our hearts.

You and JILL are living a life of purpose and HUGE meaning, that’s for sure! Your advocacy on her behalf and your devotion to each other is I sprational to all of us.

And we all know that JILL has One of a Kind Kitty Wit! We all feel better after having a good kitty bely laugh and it IS very healing!

Erica, you contribute so much. You are our “to to” girl for various studies and direct us to great sources for information.

A fun belief system I like to diddle with is based on our soul energy floating around in the Universe deciding on what “life lessons” we need on our return to earth clothes (perhaps as a human, perhaps as a dog, or perhaps as a ONE OF A KIND CAT). We “may” even chose our parents and chose what circumstances we need to be exposed to for our soul’s growth.

And we’re all here, so e believe, to achieve the highest vibration of love possible and to always live in a state of grace and gratitude…..learning how to live in the. moment……learning how to love unconditionally.

I won’t bore you any further by elaborating! YAY Salt! But clearly you and JILL made a contract in your soul energy to reconnect when you came back to earth. Part of your mission had to be to show each other and to show us, what unconditional love looks like!

You and JILL will make the right decision on now to proceed. Listen to her. It may include holistically, medically or just trusting that a Ealing in many forms has already taken place. Whatever you do–or don’t do—stay present with JILL and all the joy she brings to you everyday. That makes BOTH of you happy and at such peace:-) 🙂

Your commitment to JILL is pure grace.

If we have to be on this darn journey, it’s a privilege to be on it with you and JILL!

Jill, the tuxedo you picked for your earth clothes is adorable! You wear it so well:-) 🙂

Bowing down to you both!

Sally and Happy Hannah

640

   benny55

June 10, 2013 @ 9:33 pm   Reply

You have noooooooooooo idea how carefully K was trying to type!

BUT you are our go-to girl , not our to to girl!! Then again maybe………._

Love! SALT

   Melinda P

July 30, 2014 @ 2:21 am   Reply

Well, we aren’t dealing with the same cancer as Jill, but you know I’m going through so many crazy feelings of my own right now and this post really spoke to me!! And whichever type Kender does have, they are all pretty atypical for cats…although not nearly as rare as this! I’m so glad I have these stories to help me through this all right now!

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