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imiquimod cream 5%/Aldara substitute available?

Hello!  A friend of mine has the following question/problem with her cat.  He's 17, and I believe a Cornish Rex (looks like hehas no hair, although he does have fine/very short hair).  He's had some skin condition that his vet thinks is cancer, and said the main treatment was surgery, but due to his age (and, unfortunately, the expense involved--last year alone, she's spent over $2000 on vet bills), that's not a viable option for her.  She did use a cream on him that appeared to temporarily work-- imiquimod cream 5% - drug name Aldara.  It has 12 single
application doses (each the size of a postage stamp).  She writes:

"Not much in them so it's hard to only use one on an application.  It cost $180 more in some
other drugstores.  I bought two boxes and used for 5 ½ weeks Monday to
Friday as the vet said.  Seemed to work fine but when stopped there was a
slight improvement but not as much as hoped for considering the cost.
The cream only seemed to work when it was being applied.  He now still gets
the little scabies.  He had a sore and lump on his shoulder where the bigger
biopsy was taken that wouldn't stop bleeding.  It finally healed and fur
grew back but now he has a little lump there again--the lump flattened out
and I thought it would disappear. ……hope this will too.
I would like to treat the cauliflower like lump that came back after his
biopsy healed.  I'm keeping an eye on it and if I think it is getting worse
will take him in right away.  After the biopsy the spot got lumpy like it is
now and it was bleeding for 6 weeks or more till it healed….then the lump
sort of disappeared and there was a slight depression and the hair was
growing back.  A week ago the cauliflower lump was back…..its not large but
worrying.
Any ideas of something to put on the scabs and this growth would be
appreciated……anything that doesn't cost as much as the last one."

Essentially, she's looking for something to apply that will work like the aldara, but without hte high cost (esp. considering the treatment only slightly improved his condition).  Any known aldara substitutes out there?
3 Responses
609884 tn?1227333003
Firstly, I'd worry about that lump. Sometimes vaccinations and biopsies sometimes can cause scarring that can actually lead to cancerous growths. Considering you were doing a biopsy for a cancer, it's possible it caused an acceleration of a pre-existing cancer.

The only alternate I can think of is a black/bloodroot salve. This is a homeopathic medication. Having no experience with it, I can't speak for it's efficacy. But it is cheaper, coming in at around forty dollars.  I've been experimenting with homeopathic remedies lately and finding some of them work very well.


Let me know if you have any other questions, and I hope this helps!
Avatar universal
update on my friend's kitty (in an email excerpt from her):

He had surgery last Wednesday.....the lump from a previous biopsy came
back and was veiny...... it was called a basal cell carcinoma and it
wasn't cancerous and was unrelated to his Bowens disease.  He has a 5/6 inch
scar on his back......they decided to remove all the scabby growths on his
back but left the spot behind the ear.  Hopefully it will never turn
cancerous.

I have a neighbour who goes to a homeopathic drug store......next time she
goes I will ask her to check out if they carry the stuff mentioned.
Otherwise when I can afford it again I'm getting the cream to treat the ear
area to see if it will improve.

If you can find out any other info let me know.  I will be taking him to
have his stitches removed next Friday......its been hell trying to keep him
from scratching and thus pulling them out.
Avatar universal
ok, so the original question then goes back to:

treatments for Bowen's disease? (keeping in mind the cat is 17--i myself have two cats (ages 4 and 5) and lost one a few years ago to cancer (she was 7 or 8)--i know you can't put a price tag on the animals you love, but at the same time, you have to take the animal's normal lifespan into consideration as well when thinking of what avenue to take)
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