Intranasal melanoma treated with radiation therapy in three dogs

Davies, O and Spencer, S and Necova, S and Holmes, E and Taylor, A and Blackwood, L and Lara-Garcia, A (2017) Intranasal melanoma treated with radiation therapy in three dogs. Veterinary Quarterly, 37 (1). pp. 274-281.

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Abstract

Three dogs were investigated for chronic unilateral nasal discharge. In all cases CT imaging showed an intranasal mass causing turbinate lysis and no evidence of metastasis. Cytology in cases 1 (a 14-year-old neutered male crossbreed dog) and 2 (a five-year-old neutered male German Shepherd dog) demonstrated a pleomorphic cell population with variable intracellular pigment suspicious of melanocytic neoplasia. Histopathology with immunohistochemistry (Melan-A and vimentin, plus PNL-2 in one case) confirmed the diagnosis of melanoma in all dogs. All dogs were treated with megavoltage radiotherapy using linear accelerators. Cases 1 and 3 (a nine-year-old neutered female beagle dog) received a hypofractionated (4 × 8 Gy) protocol and case 2 received a definitive (12 × 4 Gy) protocol. Complete remission was demonstrated on repeat CT scan five months after diagnosis in case 1 and seven months in case 2. Stable disease was documented on CT at four months for case 3; however, clinical signs in this dog remained controlled for 10 months in total. Case 1 died of unrelated causes five months after diagnosis, case 2 was euthanased due to the development of seizures 13 months after diagnosis, and case 3 was lost to follow-up 12 months after diagnosis. Melanoma should be considered as a rare differential diagnosis for primary nasal neoplasia in the dog and radiation therapy can be used as effective local therapy.