Oscar, 10yr old ginger tom cat
- developed a malignant fibrosarcoma at chip location
"Oscar is my 10 year old ginger tom. About 10 months ago I was having problems with other cats coming into the house and tyrannising us all. It seemed a good plan to get a microchip reading cat flap to deter intruders, so at some expense I installed the new cat flap and got him microchipped by a kind man from the local RSPCA. For several months all seemed fine until I noticed a lump between his shoulder blades. It was mobile and seemed painless. For a long time I thought it was probably a cyst, but it started to grow increasingly rapidly so eventually I took him to the vet and we agreed that it was a good plan to remove it. The surgery came in the nick of time as it was growing so fast at this point that the few days before the operation the skin started to ulcerate over the tumour. The surgery cost nearly £400 with £68 for the lab report. Initially I questioned the necessity of paying the extra for the lab report, but I am pleased that I did given the information it revealed. I collected him from the vets with a massive wound which was fairly traumatic, but at this point he seems to have recovered well, however the vet also said that these tumours often recur."
"When we went for the check up appointment the vet said that it was a highly malignant fibrosarcoma but was unlikely to be related to the microchip. I was about to leave the surgery when I realised that I needed to have a close look at the actual report. It was only when I read the report that I realised the problem was clearly caused by the microchip. The lab report stated that the tumour was clearly caused by the microchip which was right in the centre of it."
"The vets seemed reluctant to admit that the problem was caused by the chip and did not inform me that DEFRA are collating information about incidents relating to microchip use. It was only through my contacting the RSPCA that they recommended that I contacted the vets to insist that they report the incident to DEFRA. I have had to badger the vets to make sure that it was reported."
"I feel that this has been a salutary experience: I could so easily have missed the fact that the microchip caused the tumour. I could have not requested a lab report, I could have not have looked closely at the report, I could have believed the vet. I have come to the conclusion that we need to be very vigilant. I wonder how many animals are having problems that are being under diagnosed?? We need to report any problems to DEFRA or our vets and spread the word to family and friends."