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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


OBJECTIVE To determine changes in dimensions of feline skin samples as a result of histologic processing and to identify factors that contributed to changes in dimensions of skin samples after sample collection.

SAMPLE Cadavers of 12 clinically normal cats.

PROCEDURES Skin samples were obtained bilaterally from 3 locations (neck, thorax, and tibia) of each cadaver; half of the thoracic samples included underlying muscle. Length, width, and depth were measured at 5 time points (before excision, after excision, after application of ink to mark tissue margins, after fixation in neutral-buffered 10% formalin for 36 hours, and after completion of histologic processing and staining with H&E stain). Measurements obtained after sample collection were compared with measurements obtained before excision.

RESULTS At the final time point, tissue samples had decreased in length (mean decrease, 32.40%) and width (mean decrease, 34.21%) and increased in depth (mean increase, 54.95%). Tissue from the tibia had the most shrinkage in length and width and that from the neck had the least shrinkage. Inclusion of underlying muscle on thoracic skin samples did not affect the degree of change in dimensions.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE In this study, each step during processing from excision to formalin fixation and histologic processing induced changes in tissue dimensions, which were manifested principally as shrinkage in length and width and increase in depth. Most of the changes occured during histologic processing. Inclusion of muscle did not affect thoracic skin shrinkage. Shrinkage should be a consideration when interpreting surgical margins in clinical cases. 945)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To evaluate responses of cats with vaccine- associated sarcomas to treatment with surgery and radiotherapy, with or without adjunctive chemotherapy.

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—76 cats (78 tumors).

Procedure—Medical records were reviewed. Factors potentially associated with survival time, time to recurrence, and time to development of metastases were evaluated.

Results—Following excision, electron beam radiation, and, in some cases, chemotherapy, 32 (41%) cats experienced recurrence, and 9 (12%) cats developed metastases. One- and 2-year survival rates were 86 and 44%, respectively. Median survival time from onset of disease was 730 days (range, 30 to 2,014 days). Median disease-free interval was 405 days (range, 30 to 925 days). Cats that underwent only 1 surgery prior to radiotherapy had a lower recurrence rate than did cats that underwent > 1 surgery and had a significantly longer disease-free interval. Survival time and disease-free interval decreased as time between surgery and the start of radiotherapy increased. Cats that developed metastases had significantly shorter survival times and disease-free intervals than did cats that did not develop metastases. Castrated male cats had a significantly shorter survival time than did spayed female cats. Cats with larger tumors prior to the first surgery had shorter survival times. Twenty-six cats received chemotherapy in addition to surgery and radiotherapy. Whether cats received chemotherapy was not associated with recurrence rate, metastasis rate, or survival time.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that excision followed by electron beam irradiation may be beneficial for treatment of cats with vaccine- associated sarcomas. Extent of excision prior to radiotherapy did not seem to be associated with recurrence rate. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2001;219:1582–1589)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association