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Histiocytoma? Any experience? Will it "go away?

April 19th, 2011, 07:38 PM
My nearly 9 month old Scottie puppy has a small bump on his foreleg. My vet has diagnosed this as a histiocytoma benign tumor. I know that these can sometimes regress and go away, but my vet isn't that optimistic. Right now the pup isn't licking or chewing the area. I've been instructed to monitor the bump for growth or infection. The plan is to remove in two months or so when we neuter our pup. Has anyone experienced a histiocytoma? Did it go away, or was it surgically removed? If surgically removed, was the healing/recovery easy? The lump is about the size of a pencil eraser and approximately half the depth of an eraser. Right now it is smaller and a little bloody due to the fine needle aspirate today.
Note: I have two major reasons to wait until approx. 1 year to neuter. Juvenile neuters can slightly elevate the chance of getting bladder cancer and my breed has an 18% chance of this already (I lost one of my Scotties to complications treating bladder cancer, so this is a huge fear of mine.) The second reason is that I would like to try this dog in agility and neutering at age 12 - 15 months can decrease the risk of cruciate ligament damage and joint injuries. I've done so much research trying to pick the right age for this. The well-being of this precious pup is my utmost concern.

April 19th, 2011, 09:57 PM
We've seen quite a few benign histiocytomas. The vets said they were pretty common and our experience holds that statement up--over the years and 12 dogs, I think we've had at least 4 histiocytomas. Unfortunately, histiocytomas seem to be pretty fragile and are injured easily. Although they apparently do often regress naturally, we've always ended up having them surgically removed because they were constantly abraded and bloody. The excision is usually quite small and local to the tumor. As long as you can keep your dog from chewing on it after surgery, it should heal up pretty easily.

We also wait to neuter till at least 12-18 months, for similar reasons to yours.

April 19th, 2011, 09:57 PM
Is your dog on an anti-histamine yet like benedryl? That's generally what you do for these situations. I have seen quite a few in the time I worked at the shelter. Your dog fits the profile quite well, with it being on a limb, a young dog.. I helped do a fine needle aspirate on one once and it was pretty cool to look at the cells once they were dyed, and all the vets I have worked with always felt like it was pretty easy to get rid of them with some basic meds or a simple surgery if it won't go away :thumbs up

April 20th, 2011, 04:06 PM
Thank you both for your advice. Right now he isn't on medication. My vet said he has tried different things (medications and creams) with limited success. Right now it is bloody, but he isn't messing with it. It is bloody from the FNA testing yesterday.

I've also contacted my breeder who has told me things to watch for and has reassured me that he will be OK. I feel that it will probably need to be removed, and am glad the the healing should be easy for him. I guess I'll have my hands full with an active little guy with two surgical sites. Have a feeling I'll be dealing with a lampshade head.

Hazelrunpack, thank you for mentioning you also neuter a little later. I just want to do the right thing for this little dog. It is hard not to second-guess yourself when everyone else is doing something totally different.

April 20th, 2011, 10:31 PM
Hope he is all better pictures

April 24th, 2011, 03:06 PM
Scottiedog sorry to hear your little guy has a problem. One of my first dogs had a histiocytoma that wasn't treated until it was removed several months after it appeared. The only reason it was removed was she noticed it one day and wouldn't leave it alone. As long as your pup is not noticing it, I would think the plan to have it removed when he is neutered is good. If on the other hand he notices it and starts licking it I would re-evaluate when it needs to be removed. :) Good luck :grouphug:

April 25th, 2011, 07:42 PM
dbg10, thanks for the encouragement. The place is less bloody-looking today since it has had about a week to heal from the fine needle aspirate. It doesn't seem to be changing in size--not larger, not smaller though either. I'm keeping an eye on it and will proceed with having it removed when Ozzie is under anesthesia for his neuter. I'm being very careful of his leg when brushing his furnishing on that foot. I appreciate your input--I know you have so much going on right now. Thank you.