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Amber Addison
Amber Addison, Veterinarian
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 8
Experience:  Associate Veterinarian at Northwest Animal Hospital
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My 5 year old yellow labrador Olivia has a small lump on the

Customer Question

My 5 year old yellow labrador Olivia has a small lump on the gum above upper canine...I took her to the vet and had told him she had been chewing on a rawhide and I thought maybe a piece got stuck in the gum he checked it out and said he honestly wasn't sure what was going on but thinking possible epilus? But decided to put her on antibiotics for ten days and see if anything happens with it... nothing... Stayed the same....pinkish...about the size of an eraser on a pencil...roundish...was slightly ulcerated...a little reddish along the bot***** *****ne closest to I had taken her back to the vet on Monday and tomorrow she is scheduled for surgery....he wants to remove it completely and send it out for a biopsy..he is thinking epulis but can't be certain...he wants to remove it all and because of the closeness to the tooth says he may need to remove the one tooth to make sure he gets it all removed. Before I go thru with this I just wanted to hear the thoughts on this from another Dr. One more thing...the reason I noticed it in the first place was because I tried giving her the bordetella vaccine in her nose and she moved to quickly and she got a little in her I was concerned and checked out her mouth and saw the lump....I normally have the vet administer shots but it was because I had wanted her to swim somewhere she had needed the shot I don't know how recent the lump appeared...she acts perfectly normal....eats fine...drinks water fine...I am hoping you can give me your thoughts as to what may be going on with her. thankyou...Karen
Thank you.....Karen
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Pet
Expert:  Amber Addison replied 2 years ago.
Epulis is possible, so are other tumors that can be caused by cancerous cells, viruses, etc. There are some issues that would require the tooth to come out and a few that wouldn't. You have the option of requesting just a biopsy of the area itself to be sent off before you go through with having the tooth taken out. The down side to that is two anesthesias if you do end up having to have the tooth removed. The up side would be knowing for sure what it is to know for sure whether or not the tooth needs to be taken out. There are some That's a tough call to make and entirely up to you as his owner. Epulis is the most common cause of what you are describing. I hope this helps you make a decision. What questions do you have about the surgery, etc.?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
What he had said was he is thinking epulis but can't def rule out cancer without sending it out for a biopsy...he is thinking possibly less than 5 percent chance of it not being epulis....he did tell me with an epulis that there is a good possibility of it growing back...right now it's very small and it doesn't seem to interfere with eating and it doesn't seem to bother her...I am concerned what if it grows back larger?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
You mentioned tumors caused by other viruses....could her getting a small amount of the bordetella vaccine in her mouth have caused this?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Is it odd for a yellow lab five years old to get an epulis? I wrote one thing incorrectly he is thinking epulis and less than 5% possibility that its cancer.
Expert:  Amber Addison replied 2 years ago.
Yeah, I would agree with the less than 5% cancer. Epulides are much more common, though they can grow very big and cause issues in the mouth, especially if not all of it is taken out. The Bordetella vaccine is bacterial components and would not have caused that problem, so don't worry at all about that. The virus I was thinking of that I have seen growths in the mouth with is the papilloma virus. With that virus though, the growth is usually very warty looking, though it can't be ruled out without the biopsy.
I appreciate your concern about it growing back larger and epulides can also affect bone locally in the area when left for an extended period. It is all about how much risk you want to take - a. do one surgery and get everything out all at once with no possibility of it growing back (plus to this would be that it is done, minus would be that an important tooth is gone and possibility that it may not have needed to come out) or b. do just a biopsy to check and see what it is and possibly have to go back to a second surgery later. If the skin is real tight over the area and the epulis will be hard to close after the biopsy, there may not be an option but to take the whole thing and what's underneath it. It's definitely not in a good place to make an easy decision on this, that's for sure!
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
thank you very much...
Expert:  Amber Addison replied 2 years ago.
Please keep me updated on how it goes! I'd love to know what the results are of the histopathology!