Bulldog Chemodectoma Heart Tumor  Question

Dr. Kramer,

I have a 6 year old Frenchie who just got diagnosed with a chemodectoma.


We just had pericardial window surgery and were told that our options are Palladia and SRT radiation.

We live in DC, but we were wondering if you had any suggestions or recommendations. Any advice or direction would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

-Chad and Stephanie

1 Answers
Dr. Roy Kraemer Staff answered 5 years ago

Answer for Chemodectoma in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs

Answer for Chemodectoma in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, Dear Chad and Stephanie, Chemodectoma is a heart base tumor located on or surrounding the aortic arch (Aorta is a major heart vessel). Chemodectomas are known as an Aortic Body Tumor, those tumors origin is from the chemoreceptors that regulate cardiac function. These tumors are seen more commonly in brachycephalic breeds such as bulldogs and French Bulldogs.

Answer for Chemodectoma in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, Chemodectomas are typically not very aggressive cancers and usually grow slowly and do not spread, on rare occasions these cancers can spread to other parts of the body (e.g., lungs and lymph nodes). On those occasions, the prognosis is less favorable.

The prognosis for cancer affecting the heart varies widely between patients. It can be very difficult to predict for an individual


Answer for Chemodectoma in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, PERICARDIECTOMY: Chemodecoma can cause pericardial effusion which is excess of fluid around the heart. The excess pericardial fluid can impair heart contractility and function. The Pericardium is an envelope around the heart that normally contains only a small amount of fluid. Palliatively, a pericardiectomy (partial or complete removal of that envelope) will help drain that excess fluid and alleviate the impermeant.

Bulldogs with a chemodectoma who are suffering from pericardial effusion can live much longer if pericardiectomy is performed, however, patients with minimal effusion that procedure will not be needed

Answer for Chemodectoma in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, RESECTION: Chemodectomas are typically nonresectable but fortunately are slow growing and unlikely to metastasize. thus surgery to completely remove the tumor is not usually possible.

Answer for Chemodectoma in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, SRS or Stereotactic radiation therapy It involves precise delivery of very focused radiation beams, to deposit large amounts of radiation in the tumor, while shielding surrounding vital organs possible damage. Usually, it is given in multiple treatments.

Answer for Chemodectoma in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs, PALLADIA is an oral medication that can be used alone, or in combination with surgery and/ or radiation therapy. The scientific data showing effective treatment with Rx is limited and while most bulldogs will tolerate others might have side effects.

Consulting with a veterinary oncologist is recommended 

Dr. Kraemer Vet4Bulldog

Answer for Chemodectoma in Bulldogs and French Bulldogs



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