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Travis Ray and the Soft Tissue Sarcoma (Noooooo not my baby boy!!)
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Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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3 June 2017 - 9:44 am
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Good tip Michelle!

And YAAAAAAAAAY FOR NO MORE SWELLING!!! 🙂

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Member Since:
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3 June 2017 - 7:41 pm
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I agree, great tip Michelle! 

No sign of swelling today so all is well on that score. And I heard from Dr. Kelly today!!!! While she did not give me any stats (which I was hoping for) we feel much reassured by what she had to say. She has been doing intralesional chemotherapy since 2003. She uses other chemo drugs as well, and has done treatments injecting tumors as well as treatments after tumor resection. While she has not had the wherewithal to actually do clinical trials she has scads of anecdotal evidence as she has done this treatment on 100's of pets, she thought she may have done close to 1,000! She has recently hired someone who has the expertise to set up and conduct a clinical trial so hopes to be publishing in the not too distant future!

Dr. Kelly literally said she loves 5-FU--she calls it an "incredible treatment". Its relatively affordable and has only rare side effects, other than hyperpigmentation of the treated area.

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Travis' elbow a day after his first treatment definitely shows hyperpigmentation. The photos shows it as much redder than it actually is, it is actually much darker. The photo is also misleading in that it is not quite as swollen at the incision as it appears. 

Dr. Kelly went on to say that she also likes 5-FU because the treatment does not kill surrounding tissue as radiation does. This makes the possibility of further surgery, in the unlikely event that the tumor recurs, much more possible. When I asked about recurrence she said "most don't come back." She told me that there is rare potential for one serious side effect, neurological issues, because the drug crosses the blood-brain barrier. But she also said it was just something to watch out for in the first 24 hours after treatment, at the least it can cause agitation and/or vocalizing. At the worst it can cause seizures. It is cumulative so the risk increases as the treatments continue but it is still extremely rare. She said it is very treatable and also that the reaction is genetic so you can test for the marker prior to treatment and know the dog's risk level before you start. She said she has only had one dog die as a result of the treatment and that was due to the fact the dog's owners did not take it for treatment when it started having seizures.

When I told her about Travis' post treatment swelling Dr. Kelly said that she does not bandage after treatment! She feels the risk of chemo contamination is small and that she wants the chemo to be able to spread out from the injection sites and that bandaging restricts this. She also said that perhaps Davis is doing this for liability reasons eg if someone was to somehow be "poisoned" by leaked chemo they could come back and sue. So, going forward we are gonna ask them to bandage very loosely and if we see any hint of swelling that bandage is gonna come off tout suite! 

Finally she said to feel free to call with any further questions or concerns and that she would be more than happy to talk to someone at Davis re: her injection protocol and whatever else is needed. I am gonna email Davis and ask them again to get in touch with her. I asked what their protocols were and they just told me they extrapolated them from the presentation that was given a few years ago but didn't really give me the details of dosing, how many shots, etc. Dang, I wish we could afford to go hang out in Santa Fe for 6 weeks and just have Dr. Kelly do the rest of TR's treatments! 

Oh, and she talked about really wanting to get her experiences with this kind of treatment out there. She feels that this is something that ultimately can be carried out by any vet with appropriate training as it does not require any specialized equipment, which makes it that much more affordable. She is more than willing to consult with and even train other vets in how to do intralesional chemo. I told her Rene would be calling her for an interview and perhaps a guest blog on tripawdsbig-grin

Sorry for the brain dump, I just wanted to get everything we talked about written down to fix it in my mind and also to share with you guys. We feel great going forward with this treatment and I think that it could really be a very viable option for tripawds like Travis that don't have other options eg amputation. We just need to get the word out about 5-FU!! 

xoxo,

Martha, Travis Ray and the OP

Virginia




Member Since:
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3 June 2017 - 8:48 pm
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Not a brain dump at all!! VERY, VERY ENCOURAGING!!!

Thank you, yet again, for taking the time to share all this INVALUABLE information! 🙂

Everything sounds so "logical" and her "anecdotal" first hand experience is just as "scientific" as some of the studies that are written up in journals.

So glad you were able ro have such a thorough conversation with her. Even though you can't work with her directly for TR's treatment, it's the next best thing!

AND Travis Ray, you wear a little "extra pigmentation" perfectly!! 🙂

I think this calls for a watermelon celebration!! 🙂

Love and hugs

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

On The Road


Member Since:
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5 June 2017 - 9:31 am
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This is exactly why we LOVE Dr. Kelly! She is so forward-thinking and always looking for better ways to treat cancer in pets, without breaking the bank or sacrificing quality of life (for example, in this blog post she discussed bisphosphonates : Bisphosphonates: When Amputation isn’t an Option

We first met her when Jerry was being treated by she and her partner, Dr. Mullins, who is no longer at the clinic. I'm looking forward to hearing more about how Travis does with the treatment, and also meeting with Dr. Kelly at some point to discuss it in more detail. We'll be sure to share what we learned in the Tripawds blog.

It's amazing that she's been doing this treatment for so long and we haven't heard anything about it. That's gonna change. More people need to know about it.

THANK YOU for the great detail!

Tripawds Founders Jim and Rene
tripawds.com | tripawds.org | bemoredog.net | triday.pet

Green Bay, WI


Member Since:
18 May 2014
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5 June 2017 - 10:17 am
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Just catching up here....sorry to hear Travis Ray is dealing with this, but your information is fascinating. Nitro had been on metronomics for about 10 months (cytoxan and Piroxicam ) before he developed cystitis and had to stop. He developed incontinence at this time, which we can only surmise came from the drugs. We deal with this issue to this day, but to be fair, he is an "elderly" Doberman, who is also dealing with kidney failure.  Paws crossed that TR's future treatments are uneventful and he sails through them easily.

Paula and Nitro

Nitro 11 1/2  yr old Doberman; right front amp June 2014. Had 6 doses carboplatin, followed by metronomic therapy. Rocked it on 3 legs for over 3 years! My Warrior beat cancer, but couldn't beat old age. He crossed the Bridge peacefully on July 25, 2017, with dignity and on his terms.  Follow his blog entitled "Doberman's journey"

http://nitro.tripawds.com

"Be good, mama loves you".....run free my beautiful Warrior

Member Since:
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9 June 2017 - 12:46 pm
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Just a quick update...Travis went in for his second treatment on Wednesday. He did great! We told them what Dr. Kelly said about bandaging but they insisted on sending him home with one anyway. By the time he got home his paw had started to swell so we took the bandage off right away. No more swelling! So its the bandage and not the chemo...Yay!!!! No other apparent side effects either! Two down, four to go, we got this!! 

And extra added bonus for Ralph is he got to hang out with Fionn and Sessy's moms for part of the day as they were in for treatment too!    It is amazing how many tripawds we have seen each time we go to Davis. Its a good thing I recently delivered a huge stack of Tripawds brochures to them!!

xoxo,

Martha, Travis Ray and the OP 

Michigan


Member Since:
11 July 2016
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9 June 2017 - 2:16 pm
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I do not understand why a University will not budge a little! Ugh and the rules!!
At any rate it’s the bandage so Yaaaaay for knowing the swelling is indeed the bandage & not a side effect from chemo!

I would remove the wrap as soon as I got Travis Ray in the vehicle!!

We are counting down 4 more to go Travis only 4 more to go buddy!!
Your paving the way for all STS in the future!!

Of course you guys got this!!!!
Hugs!
Holly & Purrkinsheart

Los Angeles, CA
Member Since:
13 June 2013
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9 June 2017 - 3:35 pm
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Counting down Mr. Travis Ray!!!! Good job!!! Fingers and paws crossed at Angel Shelby's Casa from me and little Jasper Lily!!! 

Thank you for the update!

XOXOXheartheartheart

Shelby Lynne; Jack Russell/Shiba Inu mix. Proud member of the April Angels of 2014.

October 15, 2000 to April 8, 2014

Our story: Broke rear leg in June 2013 - non-conclusive results for cancer so leg was plated and pinned. Enlarged spleen in September 2013 and had it removed and was diagnosed with Hemangiosarcoma and started chemotherapy. Became a Tripawd January 8th, 2014 and definitive Hemangiosarcoma diagnosis. Three major surgeries in 7 months and Shelby took them all like a champ only to lose her battle to cancer in her brain. We had 8 amazing extra months together and no regrets. #shelbystrong #loveofmylife



Member Since:
16 October 2012
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9 June 2017 - 3:49 pm
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Great job Travis.  I agree as soon as in the car or on the way to the car off with the bandage. 

Thank you for the update and continued prayers

xoxoxox

Michelle & Angel Sassy

sassymichelle-sm.jpg

Sassy is a proud member of the Winter Warriors. Live long, & strong Winter Warriors.
sassysugarbear.tripawds.com
07/26/2006 - Sassy earned her wings 08/20/2013

05/04/2006 -  Bosch, Sassy's pal, earned his wings 03/29/19  fought cancer for 4 months.

"You aren't doing it TO her, you are doing it FOR her. Give her a chance at life."

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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9 June 2017 - 8:37 pm
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TRAVIS RAY!!! YAAAAAAAAAY!!! You have that bandage off and you are rocking thst treatment 🙂 🙂

We have a name for dogs like you! HERO RAY!! 🙂

And Ralph got to meet some other SuoerStar Heros! You have yiur own little Tripawd Pawty!

Allmpaws crossed for continuing success!! 🙂

Love!

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

Wherever the Wind Takes Me, Dude

Member Since:
25 July 2009
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12 June 2017 - 9:45 am
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You ROCK TR, keep it up! 

Wyatt Ray Dawg . . . The Tripawds Leg-A-Cy Continues!

Read all about my adventures at my Tripawds Blog

Santa Fe, NM


Member Since:
19 July 2016
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15 June 2017 - 2:38 pm
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Travis Ray you keep up the good work - who can keep a bandage on an elbow anyway? Who would want to?

If you do need to come to Santa Fe, I have a spare room. You and your "jesters," as I believe Manni refers to them, are welcome. Maybe you can teach Miss Roxy some manners!

Hooray for good updates! Keep 'em up!

Hugs!

Teri and Roxy and Angel Isa

Right rear leg amp 7/12/16 due to OSA. Metastatic lesion on her right front leg, January 2017. Joined the Winter Warriors January 19, 2017. Run free my sweet girl.

Michigan


Member Since:
11 July 2016
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11 July 2017 - 12:29 pm
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Hope TR is still rocking his treatment ! You guys have been on my mind so thought I would post and let you know we were thinking of you & hope all is well at the OP! 

Update when you can!

Hugs! 

Holly & Purrkins

heart

Virginia




Member Since:
22 February 2013
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11 July 2017 - 5:22 pm
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Interesting Holly!!! I was just thinking avout TR and the Oaktown pack. Not necessarily completely along the lines one might think though! More along the lines of its time for WATERMELON videos!!! 🙂 🙂 I actually bought some watermelon yesterday to film Merry Myrtle and Frankie eating it!! Will try and get that done bedore I eat it all!! 🙂

Yes, update when you can.

LOVE AND HUGSheart

Sally and Alumni Happy Hannah and Merry Myrtle and Frankie too!

Happy Hannah had a glorious additional bonus time of over one yr & two months after amp for osteo! She made me laugh everyday! Joined April's Angels after send off meal of steak, ice cream, M&Ms & deer poop!

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13 March 2010
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3 September 2017 - 2:54 pm
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Geez youse guys, how the F'ing F is it already September?! I am so sorry I went totally MIA and left y'all hanging. Travis is doing GREAT!!!! It took longer than we wanted but we finally got all 6 treatments completed on August 3 and I have been meaning to post ever sinceway-confused. The only side effects he had throughout were swelling from the bandaging they insisted on applying each time and raw spots opening up on his elbow. The effects of the 5-FU were cumulative and as the treatments progressed the skin on his elbow got blacker and thinner. At one point he could literally just bump it lightly and the skin would break. After the first two treatments we had to stop and wait another week because this happened:

We waited 2 weeks after the third treatment and that went well. After the 4th things looked great so we went for the 5th the next week. Ooops! More sores that took nearly 3 weeks to heal. Finally it was on to number 6, with no adverse effects and TR has been concentrating on getting his hair to grow back on the elbow ever since. I'm beginning to wonder if it will ever grow all the way back in! I've noticed the hair is a little thin higher up on his leg as well so the local effects spread a bit!

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SO in our experience, treatments every two weeks is the way to go. The only other dog they have done at UC Davis had to go to every two weeks as well. I asked Dr. Kelly about this after we had the first blow up but never spoke to her directly and never got an answer as to how she deals with the issue. I would love to know because the protocol is once a week so, of course, I have a small niggling worry that the treatment might not be as effective as it would have been if he was able to go 6 weeks in a row....I am hoping Rene will call Dr. Kelly soon for an interview (hint hint) so we can find out everything Dr. Kelly knows!  

Overall, I am really happy we went with the 5-FU. Only local effects, minimal stress on Travis, and so far so good!! 

Of course the OP had a li'l flying dutchman party when Travis came home from his last treatmentclap

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And finally, I ran across this looking for the other pics for this post and had to share it. Baby boy was so stinkin' cute....no wonder I was a foster failure! This was his first tripawds party at Mill Valley--10 months old and the hair on his stump was still growing inheart

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xoxo and thanks so much for all your support!! 

Martha, Travis, and the OP

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