Lymphosarcoma in cats: basic information, diagnosis and treatment

Oncological diseases in domestic animals are found every year more often. This is facilitated by the adverse environmental situation in most domestic cities, as well as the development of diagnostic techniques. Often lymphosarcoma is detected in cats.

Basic information

This is the type of cancer that is often diagnosed in cats. More precisely, it is an oncology that affects lymphocytes and the entire lymphoid tissue of the body. It is assumed that the feline leukemia virus often contributes to the development of pathology. Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) cats are also at high risk. Animals of any age, gender and breed get sick. Young cats are more likely to suffer from lymphosarcoma if they are infected with the feline leukemia virus. In older cats, the causes of the disease may be different (ecology, autoimmune diseases).

Lymphosarcoma is divided into several forms, and this depends on its place of "growth." In some cats, tumors appear in many places, and therefore they do not belong to any one type. As a rule, this applies to animals with a severely advanced form of the disease.

Gastrointestinal tract. The most common form of the disease implies precisely its defeat. Tumors affect the stomach, intestines and liver, as well as some of the lymph nodes surrounding the intestines (mesenteric). Cats with this type of lymphosarcoma often experience vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss, and a sharp decrease in appetite.

Mediastinal lymphosarcoma. In this case, the pulmonary and bronchial lymph nodes are affected. Symptoms indicate pulmonary or heart failure: shortness of breath, shortness of breath, swelling is possible. The mucous membranes of the body turn blue, in severe cases, pulmonary edema develops.

Renal lymphosarcoma. Often, a generalized form of oncology begins with the kidneys. From there, metastases spread throughout the body. Cats with this form of lymphosarcoma are detected by signs of renal failure (polyuria, polydipsia, loss of appetite, vomiting, jaundice).

Bone marrow damage. In many cases, this form of lymphosarcoma is mistaken for leukemia. In this case, the disease is detected by determining a sharp decrease in the volume of all blood cells. Anemia, persistent infections, and bleeding are common problems in animals with this type of cancer.

External lymph nodes. Often the presence of lymphosarcoma is detected only by signs of their defeat. Symptoms of lymphosarcoma in cats in this case can be very diverse: vomiting, loss of appetite, apathy. But still, the main symptom is sharply enlarged lymph nodes.

In rare cases, it is possible bone lymphosarcoma in a cat, or the defeat of some other internal organs.


A biopsy is extremely important in making a diagnosis. In some cases, you have to take samples from several lymph nodes at once. The simplicity with which a diagnosis can be made depends on the location of the tumor.

Important! Enlarged lymph nodes in 99% of cases do not indicate cancer, but the presence of infection in the body.

Therefore, veterinarians always take blood and urine tests, and if necessary, carry out x-ray and ultrasound examinations. Ultrasound of the abdominal cavity (sonogram) will allow you to assess the condition of the liver, spleen, internal lymph nodes and intestines.

An x-ray of the chest allows you to find out if the pulmonary lymph nodes are involved in the process. A bone marrow aspirate is very important: it makes it possible to identify tumor cells, as well as assess the organ's ability to reproduce normal blood components. When the veterinarian receives the results of all studies, he will be able to prescribe the most appropriate treatment for lymphosarcoma in cats.


Chemotherapy is the main therapeutic method. In addition to it, surgery and radiation treatment are usually used. But here it all depends on the specific case: the size and location of the tumor, the age and condition of the animal, etc.

Lymphosarcoma is very sensitive to chemotherapy, and more than 60% of treated cats recover. Unfortunately, a certain amount of cancer cells can still remain in the body of the animal. In this case, it is customary to talk about long-term remission, and not about a complete cure. And therefore, when receiving the first positive results of treatment, chemotherapy is by no means stopped. The duration of remission depends on many factors, including the primary focus, as well as the condition of the animal at the time of treatment. Usually it is at least 6-8 months.

As a rule, the duration of treatment is at least four to six months. The main drugs (L-asparaginase, vincristine, methotrexate) are alternated to reduce the likelihood of metastases. As a rule, prednisolone is also included in the treatment regimen.

Watch the video: Lymphoma in cats (December 2019).