Feline Squamous Cell Carcinoma Prognosis

Feline squamous cell carcinoma is a type of cancer that forms on a cat's skin, usually near the facial area. This type of cancer appears to be linked to sun exposure, especially for outdoor cats with lighter colored coats, and occurs most frequently in older cats. Prognosis will depend on the overall health of the cat and how progressive the disease becomes before it is discovered.

There is no cure for feline squamous cell carcinoma, but with attention and proper treatment, it's possible for a cat to continue for some time with a good quality of life.

Prognosis for Feline Squamous Cell Carcinoma

The prognosis for feline squamous cell carcinoma will vary greatly depending upon where the cancer has spread and how the cat responds to treatment options. This type of cancer can spread quickly to areas like the lungs and esophagus. 

biopsy will likely be done at the site of the tumor and considerations for treatment options can then be discussed. Different types of treatment can often be performed simultaneously, giving the cat a better chance at regaining health and leading a fairly normal life thereafter.

Treatment Options

Treatment options for feline squamous cell carcinoma include many different types of therapy. Surgery to remove a cancerous tumor is often the first choice, depending upon the location. If the ears or portion of the skin are affected, a cat can still maintain a healthy lifestyle after removal of the tumor. If organs such as the tongue or esophagus are affected, other options will need to be pursued. Following is a brief list of additional treatment options that can be used in lieu of, or in combination with surgical removal of a cancerous tumor:

  • Chemotherapy - this option is expensive, but can help to manage the spread of cancerous cells to more dangerous parts of the cat's body. The affected areas are of concern with this option as well, however, and potential dangers and side effects should be seriously considered.
  • Medication - since significant pain may be present with feline squamous cell carcinoma, you may need to determine the benefits of each type of medication. Administration is available in pill form, via cream or by adhering a pain patch. Each option has benefits and disadvantages.
  • Alternative Options - research has shown that many homeopathic and herbal remedies that are designed specifically for cats can be of great benefit in helping to manage this type of cancer. Due to the natural properties of these types of remedies, you can use these simultaneously with more traditional forms of treatment.

After Care

Properly caring for a cat with feline squamous cell carcinoma can help to improve quality of life and also help to speed recovery from surgery, chemotherapy or other treatment options that you have decided to pursue. Be sure to help the cat to adapt to any dietary or appetite changes by researching the quality of food you choose and easing the cat into healthier options. Also, limit exposure to the sun and help to ease pain by monitoring reaction to different pain medications.