Lola is a spayed female, 8 year old mixed retriever, she presented one day for a small lump on the left hip.
Routinely, when masses appear we do cytology which is a simple procedure, where we collect cells by aspirating with a needle and syringe. We then place the sample on a slide and send it to a lab for a pathologist to diagnose the type of mass on the animal, to have a better idea of what we are dealing with prior to surgery.
Lola’s cytology came back as a basal cell tumor which can vary from benign to malignant. However, if it is malignant it is usually confined to a small area on the skin.
In Lola’s case after removing the mass it was sent to a lab where the diagnosis was confirmed as a basal cell tumor, which was malignant but because we removed it promptly and with good margins around the tumor, the surgery was curative and Lola will be just fine.
Lola’s case shows us how important prompt and proper action dealing with skin tumors is very important to have the best chance of a cure.