JD's Mast Cell Tumor: Surgery and Pathology Report

JD had his mast cell tumor removed on last week. Everything went well and I will go into more details on all his procedures next Thursday. Since then we were tending to his surgical sites and waiting for the pathology report.

The pathology report came today.

That is much faster than we expected, which is great. Who likes waiting for these things?

JD's ultrasound and x-rays didn't show anything suspicious.

There are no signs of any lesions, metastasis, enlarged lymph nodes or anything else of concern. His blood work also looked good. Quite good for an old guy.

The pathology on the removed tissue confirmed the mass was indeed a mast cell tumor. Then there are a lot of details followed by the important bit.

Excision is complete.

We had quite a debate how to remove enough tissue from an area where there really isn't any. We had a discussion about the importance of being able to close the incision versus getting clean margins. The area on the tarsus is tricky because there is very little to work with.

We decided that getting clean margins is more important than being able to close easily. It resulted in JD needing getting a skin graft from his chest to close but it was worth it.

We got clean margins.

It wasn't so tricky taking out enough skin around the tumor but it was tricky to find enough to remove below it, between the tumor and the bone. The vet took out two layers of connective tissue below, which was as deep as she could have gone.

There was less than 1 mm of tumor-free tissue at that margin. But it was tumor free. Th closest margin was 7 mm and the other margins were all over 1 cm (out of 6 sections examined).

The other finding of concern was the grade of the tumor.

Microscopic findings: Grade 1, low-grade mast cell tumor.

Low grade mast cell tumors are usually well-behaved and  taking them out is the end of them.

So that is all great news.

This is the best case scenario.

Home run. Now we just need to make sure that JD's incisions heal and we are good.

Related articles:
It's That Time of the Year Again: Annual Wellness Exam and JD's Bumps 
JD's Biopsy Results Revealed Mast Cell Tumor: You Don't Know What the Bump Is Unless You Look at the Cells
See Something Do Something Cancer

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  1. So glad to read of this good news. Clean margins is a plus. I hope is recovery is quick and easy.

    1. Thank you, it's excellent news. The clean margins came at a cost but still worth it.

  2. Yay! So happy to read this follow-up as I have been following your story. Hope he heals well and completely.


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