Brain Tumors in Pets
Composed of thousands of cells, the body’s cells are made, divide, die, and then are replaced with new cells, which is all controlled by the brain’s signals. Trauma and illness can increase the number of cells produced in order to replace lost cells and repair the body. In some cases cells begin frantically dividing and reproducing in a localized area of the body; this abnormal growth of cells is called a tumor. Tumors are a dangerous growth of cells in a localized spot, as they can become cancerous and spread throughout the body. Brain tumors are considered a medical emergency, as this growth could cause the body to shut down completely.
A pet with a brain tumor may display symptoms like blindness, sensitivity in the head and neck regions, and seizures. A seizure is a uncontrollable, erratic physical movements over a short period of time. These movements can be harsh jerks of the body or spasms that happen suddenly without warning.
Studies have shown that those pets more commonly diagnosed with cancerous tumor formations are those that tend to be overweight or of older age. In order to diagnose the brain tumor, the growth must be analyzed. The veterinarian will begin by taking diagnostic images of the affected area. These images will pinpoint the location of the tumor and allow the veterinarian to make plan for surgery. The veterinarian may also test the blood and urine to cancel out other possibilities and as a basic assessment of the pet for treatment later on. The tumor will be removed if it has not affected the surrounding structures and then tested for cancerous potential. The tumor will be placed in a formaldehyde solution and sent to a lab for analysis.