August 6, 2010

Oral tumors

Oral tumors (growths) are very common in veterinary patients. These growths can be benign or malignant (cancerous). In many cases oral tumors are treatable with good long-term results. Correct treatment depends on obtaining a small biopsy sample to identify the particular tumor type, determining if the tumor has spread to the lungs or lymph nodes, and obtaining detailed dental radiographs to show how far the tumor has spread locally. After this information is gathered, a detailed treatment plan can be formulated.

Oral tumor in a dog.
This large mass was bleeding and making it difficult for this dog to eat. The owners noticed that the tumor was gradually increasing in size.

Large mass near the right upper canine tooth (fang).

After removal of the tumor.

Invasive oral tumor in a cat.
Early diagnosis and treatment dramatically improve the success rate of treatment. When allowed to grow unchecked, some tumors cannot be treated effectively.

Unfortunately, this tumor had grown too large to be treated surgically. The large area of damaged bone is visible on the left side of the picture, and the extent of the growth is marked by the arrows.