Spike's operation pictures
Spike's pathology report:
Pancreatic Islet Cell Carcinoma
DESCRIPTION: Pancreatic tissue -1 sample received; 1 section examined.
This section contains a highly cellular neoplasm approximately 1cm in diameter. This is composed of cuboidal or polyhedral cells with a moderate amount of pale, slightly vacuolated cytoplasm. The cells are arranged chiefly as nests and cords, separated by a fine network of fibrovascular tissue. There is moderate nuclear atypia and mitoses are moderately frequent (up to 5 per high power field). The growth pattern at the periphery of the tumour is moderately infiltrative and occasional small clusters of neoplastic cells are apparently within the lumina of lymphatic vessels. Excision of this individual tumour appears complete, but this is probably of little consequence given that there is evidence of lymphatic invasion.
DIAGNOSIS: Pancreatic islet cell carcinoma.
DISCUSSION: The appearance is consistent with a pancreatic islet cell tumour and the degrees of nuclear atypia and mitotic activity together with the infiltrative behaviour and evidence of lymphatic invasion classify it as a carcinoma. According to most sources, pancreatic islet cell tumours are the commonest neoplasms of ferrets. They arise mostly from the beta cells and secrete insulin, hence their popular name of "insulinoma". Clinical signs are referrable to hypoglycaemia. Adenomas are generally small, well circumscribed and may be cured by excision, but carcinomas tend to be infiltrative, sometimes multiple and eventually metastasize to the draining lymph nodes, liver and sometimes other abdominal viscera. The prognosis, therefore, is very guarded. Peak prevalence of these tumours is between 4 and 7 years old and there is no sex predilection, although there is a suggestion that neutered animals are more frequently affected than intact ones.