Caring for a Three Legged Dog or Cat
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I have heard of this but have not used it personally. Did your vet save some of the tumor? I believe it needs to be processed a certain way in order to make the vaccine. Did you ask them specifically about success with osteosarcoma? Most of the time I think this is used for inoperable soft tissue tumors such as mast cell tumors, oral melanoma, or squamous cell carcinoma.
Hi Pam, thank you so much for replying and this is really helpful. The oncologist did offer Torigen as one of a few ways to try and doing a full histopathology of the tumor and margins. Our hopes for this are not for the bone cancer which hopefully has all been removed, but for metastisis to the lungs, which were clear on an xray, but I know that doesn't mean it's not there. So, that's soft tissue. I'd heard through an osteosarcoma FB group the same thing you said, that Torigen is mostly used for soft tissue as well. Our oncologist didn't tell us that. Plus, it could spread to another bone, so, maybe it isn't worth the shots. I will call Torigen Pharmaceutical today and ask. Thank you again,
I spoke with a Torigen sales rep named Mike (206) 305-2720 yesterday. Unfortunately, I was out in the woods walking my older dog when he called and didn't have anything to write with.
There have been 30 non-metastisized* osteosarcoma patients. He said data is spotty because vets are asked to report back to them only every 6 months, and many vets are busy, don't have time, or forget. Some only report the deaths, but not how well the others are doing. He said he knew of one cat who was doing well.
Of the 30, seven had died. Six from metastasis, one from something else. He repeated that these seven don't necessarily represent how many dogs have actually died, only how many have been reported. They've tried the vaccine on around 700 dogs, cats, horses, and two tigers to date, but I'm unsure if this 30 is the total osteosarcoma dogs treated — or the total treated since Jan. 2019. I'm guessing it's the total amount of osteosarcoma since there are so many kinds of cancers, but I don't know for sure. Three (?) of the dogs died within 2 months of receiving the vaccine. He said it takes up to 6 weeks for an immune response to build.
*Visibly metastasized, that is.
Good question. Heavy sigh.
When Jody's biopsy report comes back, we'll discuss it with the oncologist. Veering as I do towards holistic medicine and amping up the immune system to preserve and fight I'm still leaning towards trying Torigen. Chemo might prolong his life and I know most dogs tolerate it okay, but chemo destroys the good as well as the bad. This cancer is so very aggressive, and it's likely metastasized and the stats for chemo working for any length of time are low. We'll probably be part of the experiment, cancer treatment will one day all be targeted therapies like this.
We have to do something. His biopsy report should be back by today or tomorrow, definitely next week. Thank you for being here... xox
Aww you are so welcome, we are honored you chose us to be part of Jody's journey. Please keep us posted. If you decide to go for the Torigen it will be very interesting to follow along.