Our expert says:
Lumps and bumps of the skin and the tissues under the skin may represent areas of inflammation, localised fat accumulation, glandular contents accumulation such as fatty gland or sweat gland accumulation, scarring and benign or malignant tumours.
To make the distinction between these various lumps and bumps, we will sometimes pass a syringe needle into a lump, remove a few cells and examine it under the microscope to identify the cause of the lumps.
Alternatively, the lumps and bumps can simply be removed surgically and then sent away for analysis by a pathologist (so-called Histopathology). While some lumps or bumps may develop slowly and appear quite benign, they may ultimately become very malignant and infiltrative and should not be ignored.
A lump or bump that is removed early and sent away for Histopathology can save a dog's life and yourself a lot of heartache. Unfortunately, the removal normally requires anaesthesia, but this is not usually a problem.
Sometimes, after results of the histopathology is received, your vet may advise that a second surgery be performed if the tumour was particularly aggressive and test results showed that it was not completely removed or penetrating deeply. This is normal, and is performed with the safety and long-term health of your pet in mind.
Dr Malan van Zyl
Veterinary Specialist Physician
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