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Dr. Altman
Dr. Altman, Veterinarian
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 13062
Experience:  Practicing small animal veterinarian for 18 years.
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I just noticed a large bump about the size of a small golf

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I just noticed a large bump about the size of a small golf ball on her back, near her hip. I don't know if it's an emergency.
JA: I'm sorry to hear that. What is the dog's name and age?
Customer: her name is ***** ***** almost 11.
JA: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Maggie?
Customer: no, she seems otherwise fine.

Welcome to Justanswer! I am Dr. Altman and happy to assist you both today! Please give me a few moments to type my response to your question!

Unless she is showing signs of lethargy, reduced appetite, restlessness, pain with palpation of the area, chewing/ licking the area it should not be an emergency but it should be evaluated by your veterinarian early this week

In order to determine if they are benign (noncancerous) lumps versus malignant (cancerous) lumps is to have your veterinarian evaluate and aspirate (poke with a needle) the lumps to evaluate the material under the microscope. This is really the only way to differentiate the concerning from the non concerning lumps definitively because a cancerous versus a noncancerous lump can appear identical on presentation

Evaluation under the microscope will be looking at the lump at a cellular level. Do the cells look normal, is it sebaceous or oil material that is benign or even fatty material indicating a lipoma or are the cells abnormal in appearance? This information is critical in order to diagnose the lump origin and whether it should be removed sooner versus later

Some tell tale signs that a lump might be more of a concern include whether it is rapidly growing, it is bothersome (scratching, licking), it is not easily picked up from the underlying tissue indicating it is attached to the muscle layer. This can be helpful but not 100 % definitive as a fine needle aspiration would be

I always advise photographing the lump with a ruler or coin next to the lump to measure the size weekly or in dark skinned dogs where it is not as readily viewable measuring with a ruler on a regular basis

Please let me know if this information makes sense and any additional questions I can assist with today

If you have more questions or if I can help in any other way, please do not hesitate to ask! If you would like to accept my answer, please press RATE OUR CONVERSATION at the top of your screen (I am not compensated in any other way). Bonuses are always welcome. Thanks!

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Is it possible for a lipoma to grow so quickly? I'm pretty sure that wasn't there this morning; that's why I thought it might be an emergency.

No a lipoma would not grow that quickly. If she is not showing any of the symptoms above then it shouldn't need to be seen tonight but if you are concerned and it will give piece of mind then having her seen tonight and the new growth aspirated will give you answers sooner

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Could it be an insect bite? I'd just want to know what can be that big, that quick, since both benign and malignant tumors are slower to grow. Some kind of hematoma? She's not had any trauma. Could you just speculate?

If it were an insect bite there would be lethargy, chewing the area, bruising, often a central area of necrosis or wound so this is unlikely. A hematoma is a possibility, yes. Aspiration really will be the best way to determine whether this is cause for concern or not for Maggie

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I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Altman