Round Cell Tumors

Last Modified: April 14, 2007


Dear OncoLink "Ask The Experts,"

My dog Max is around 7-8 yrs old. He is a very active Labrador mix. For about 6-7 months he has been biting at his back leg. He developed a lump in the area, so we took him to the vet. They removed the lump and the toe, checked his lymph nodes, and said it had spread there. We are taking him to an oncologist. They said the type of cancer was a round cell sarcoma. I am trying to do research on it and I can't find much. Though we are already getting help I would still like to research what I can. If you have any information on this I would really appreciate it.


Lili Duda, VMD, Section Editor of the OncoLink Veterinary Oncology Menu, responds:

Round cell tumors are usually considered the third major category of cancers alongside carcinomas and sarcomas. Round cell tumors include lymphoma, plasma cell tumor/multiple myeloma, mast cell tumor, histiocytoma, histiocytic tumors, transmissible venereal tumor, and sometimes melanoma. It is important to determine which particular type of round cell a tumor consists of, as the treatment recommendations and prognosis can vary widely. There are a variety of special stains and immunohistochemical techniques that can be used to help determine the specific tumor type. The veterinarian needs to work in conjunction with the veterinary histopathologist to help arrive at a final diagnosis.