Message Number: YG7021 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Caitlyn M. Martin
Date: 2001-09-05 23:24:00 UTC
Subject: Re: [Ferret-Health-list] Lucys' was adrenocarcinoma

Hi, Sharon,

On Wed, 5 Sep 2001 11:03:22 -0700 (PDT)
sharon allen <echotally@y...> wrote:

> Just got the pathology report back on Lucy. It showed
> an "adrenocarcinoma that did not extend beyond the
> encapsulation border".

The usual disclaimer applies: I am not a vet, and I am only writing about my
personal experience with one of my ferrets who had an adrenocarcinoma, and the
knowledge I've gained dealing with the five in our business who have had
adrenal disease. Your vet is far more qualified to answer than I am. Having
said that, here's my minimally educated opinion :)

The fact that it didn't get through the capsule is great news. This is one of
those cases where having the adrenal surgery done sooner rather than later was
probably important.
> Lucy is back to her old rambunctious self, running and
> playing and picking on the others like she did before
> the surgery. Her vulva remains normal, and she is not
> as aggressive as before the surgery.

Fantastic! It sounds like your vet did a great job.

> Even
> though the right adrenal appeared normal, could
> something be wrong and I am just being paranoid?

There is a chance that the adrenal disease could recur in the other gland.
It's unlikely, but it does happen.

> what do I
> look for besides a swollen vulva and generally ill
> health, as my vet said?

The same symptoms you saw before the surgery, like hair loss, weight loss, and
aggressiveness. Pertwee seemed to be doing brilliantly for the first couple of
weeks after his first (left) adrenal surgery and then the symptoms started all
over again. One big difference: Pertwee's carcinoma was malignant and had
gone through the capsule of the left adrenal gland. Also, though we didn't
know it at the time, Pertwee was also suffering from a problem with his right
kidney. So... chances are Lucy will be fine.

If anything is wrong Lucy will let you know. I believe the cost of a vet visit
isn't much to pay for piece of mind when I have my doubts about my weasels. I
used to think I was an overly protective, paranoid ferret mom, but in all but
one case when I thought something might just be wrong it was. You know your
Lucy better than anyone else in the world. Don't worry yourself unnecessarily
if she's doing fine. If you see something that doesn't seem right to you,
though, I'd go to the vet just to be sure. With my vet that costs me all of

Anyway, I hope Lucy continues to do brilliantly. She's sure lucky to have you.

All the best,