Dog Intracranial Neoplasia
Dog Intracranial Neoplasia
There seems to be an indication that dogs are affected by intracranial neoplasia more than any other species of animals. These tumors are categorized in two different terms: primary and secondary.
The primary tumors start in the spinal cord, brain and other areas of the central nervous systems. Although there is usually only on single tumor, there have been instances of multiple tumors as well.
Secondary tumors are tumors that have metastasized to the brain. The most common type of these secondary tumors originates in the dog’s nose, breasts or prostate gland as well as the lungs.
Signs and Symptoms
Changes in your dog may occur gradually over a long period of time, sometimes years. Initially they will have headaches that they can’t tell you about, avoid noises and appear to have Dog Lethargy.
Dogs will have seizures more than cats. This is especially true if the Dog Seizures occur after the age of 4 in dogs. The seizure can be either generalized, grand mal, or focal. In dogs you may also notice an altered posture, changes in gait, circling, Dog Depression, inability to control elimination and behavior changes.
If the tumor is in the area of the brain stem, you may notice profound weakness, vision or hearing loss or smell. It there is weakness and lethargy, the tumor is usually located in the sensory motor region or the frontoparietal area. With visual changes, involvement of the optic nerve may be evident. Each sensory loss indicates a tumor in a different area of the dog’s brain.
Laboratory tests such as chemistry panels, urinalysis and hemogram are initially performed. X-rays are only useful if the tumors are in the nasal cavity or the skull and extend into the brain.
Some analysis of cerebrospinal fluid will be done, due to the fact that there is increased pressure within the spinal column. If drainage is not performed with an experienced hand, the change in pressure can cause the brain to become herniated. This is the last test that will be performed due to its obvious danger.
CT scans can tell you the size and exact location of the tumor in your dog. An MRI is also used in treatment as they are more advanced in their diagnostic abilities compared to CT scans.
Biopsies can also be done and is very important. The biopsy is done while the CT is being performed which practically eliminates former complications of the procedure.
Treatment is used to control other effects of the tumor. These include cerebral edema and intracranial pressure. This can be done by reducing the size of the tumor or eliminating it. This can be accomplished by radiation, chemotherapy, surgery or immunotherapy.
Surgery is often used in the treatment of intracranial neoplasia. Surgery will depend on the area of the brain that is involved, the size of the tumor and the rate of growth. In the event that surgery, gene therapy, and immunotherapy are unsuccessful in the treatment, palliative forms of therapy will be carried out. This can include medication and is temporary.
The poor supply of data does not lead to a definitive diagnosis. Some relief is noted with surgery, but not always. Often combination therapies are used to achieve better results.
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