Veterinary Society of
Surgical Oncology

General Considerations

  • dermal melanoma is rare in cats but 50% are malignant
  • etiology is unknown but alterations in oncogenes, tumor suppressor genes, and immune surveillance are involved
  • feline melanoma can be induced experimentally with FeSV but unlikely to be involved naturally
  • mean age 10-12 years
  • sites: head and especially ocular and eyelids


  • surgery
  • ± gene therapy, radiation therapy, local hyperthermia, photodynamic therapy, and intralesional cisplatin
  • durable response to course-fraction radiation therapy
  • responses are short-lived for photodynamic therapy, hyperthermia, and intralesional cisplatin
  • chemotherapy is usually ineffective (agents include mitoxantrone, doxorubicin, platinums, and melphalan)


Back to top