How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Andy Your Own Question
Dr. Andy
Dr. Andy, Medical Director
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 2671
Experience:  UC Davis graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
Type Your Veterinary Question Here...
Dr. Andy is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My aged 9 has a swelling just in front of her right

Customer Question

My ***** ***** bitch aged 9 has a swelling just in front of her right shoulder. It feels soft and squashy.
I took her to the vet a couple of weeks ago and she drew some fluid off and sent it away for testing. The results didn't show anything and where inconclusive. She said it was what she would expect to find round a bite or a sting although there is no evidence.
After she had drawn some fluid off the swelling went down but it has come back again.
The dog seems quite normal and the vet's advice was to leave it and see what happens.
If I wanted to take it further she would have to sedate the dog and take a tissue sample.
The dog gets really stressed at the vets and wriggles so we have to do exams on the floor. For example one year she was having her annual booster and the jab went in my finger :-).
I really like our vets but wonder if it's safe to leave it but on balance the stress caused to pet and owner I might err to leave it and see.
Regards Allan
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 5 months ago.

Hi Allan! My name is***** Thank you for your question about Skippy. I'm sorry to hear that the trips to the vet's office aren't the least stressful for him and you. How long ago was the fluid drawn off? Is it bigger than before? Any chance you can take a picture of it and post it here with the paper clip icon?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Hi thanks for the reply.
The sample was taken about 2 weeks ago and the swelling has come back to almost the same size. I will take a pic' but it doesn't look that bad but it can be felt.
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 5 months ago.

No problem on helping. That is good that it doesn't look visibly bad. So actual fluid was pulled off the swelling. Did your vet feel it was a cyst?

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
She couldn't say. She said the lab report didn't show anything sinister but wouldn't rule out a tumor and would need to do further tests to be more sure. It was all a bit vague.
Expert:  Dr. Bruce replied 5 months ago.

Sometimes the results from an aspiration of a swelling / mass are vague. The pathologists reading the sample (evaluating what they are seeing on stained microscopic slides) can only interpret things as best as the sample provided. Some aspirations don't give much cellularity / give up the cells so they can see them on the sample. It is definitely good that they didn't see anything obviously bad on the submitted sample. Could this hold true for it that it isn't a bad situation and it is a cyst / lipoma like growth? This would be the hope. At this time, it would seem reasonable to monitor it for it getting bigger or having a discharge. If this was happening, then there would be more of a push to get him sedated to then take it off / get a better sample. Could you be more proactive and do this sooner? Absolutely. Some owners just don't want to minimize risks and getting it off sooner than later would be in this line of pursuit.

Related Veterinary Questions