Feline skin cancer on the nose is a common type of cancer in cats. Skin cancers that occur in cats are more likely to be malignant (cancerous) than in dogs. There is a wide range of treatment options for feline skin cancer on the nose, but early diagnosis and treatment is the key to survival of cancer in cats.
According to Petplace.com, skin cancer is the second most common type of cancer in cats. Skin cancer occurs most often in middle-aged to older cats (6 to 14 years of age), and is not breed specific. Skin cancer is an uncontrolled growth of cells on the skin. White cats may be at any increased risk of skin cancer on the nose, because their skin is more sensitive to sun exposure. Areas on the cat's body that are thinly coated with hair, such as the nose, ears and eyelids are particularly susceptible to developing skin cancer.
There are several types of skin cancers that may develop in cats. Melanomas are one type of serious skin cancer that may occur in cats. A melanoma tumour is comprised of melanocytes, which are the cells that provide the pigmentation in the cat's skin. Other types of skin cancers are basal cell carcinoma, mast cell tumours and fibrosarcoma. Skin cancers may appear to be a lump under the skin or begin as a sore on the nose that does not heal.
The symptoms associated with feline skin cancer on the nose may include a lump just under the skin, swelling, a sore on the nose, redness of the nose and itching of the nose. If your cat has any of these symptoms, consult your veterinarian for diagnosis and treatment. It is often difficult to determine if the cat is suffering from some type of infection or if cancer is present. Therefore, it is best to let the veterinarian examine the cat.
In order to diagnose skin cancer in your cat, the veterinarian will perform a full physical evaluation and take a detailed history of your cat's health. Diagnostic tests such as a CBC (complete blood count), a chest X-ray (to see if cancer has spread to the lungs), a lymph node examination and a biopsy may be necessary to confirm a diagnosis of cancer in your cat.
According to Petplace.com, the treatment recommended for feline skin cancer on the nose may depend on the type of cancer that is present and the extent of the disease. Surgery may be performed if the cancer is confined to the nose to remove the tumour. This may be followed by radiation or chemotherapy to control the spread of the disease.