Veterinary questions? Ask a Vet for Answers ASAP
Hi, Welcome to Just Answer. I'm Chris, a small animal Vet based in the UK. I am reviewing your question and will get back to you as soon as possible
I'm afraid it is impossible to say what the lump is simply via a picture. Certain features of a lump can be more concerning for a malignant tumour (rapid growth, invasive of underlying tissue, ulcerative surface), but some form of biopsy would be needed to say for sure.
Did your vet discuss performing a Fine Needle Aspirate (FNA) of the mass? This is minimally invasive, can usually be done consciously and often gives important information as to if a mass is likely to be malignant or benign. This would be my recommendation of the next step before resorting to surgery in a high risk animal.
If the mass is benign then it can be left alone so long as it is not becoming severely ulcerated or infected. If malignant then you would need to weigh up to risk/benefit of surgery given your dogs age and other conditions.
I hope that helps?
Ah I see, in that case a conscious FNA may not be possible. I she needs sedation then actually a general anaesthetic is often safer, so removal of the mass for analysis would be a better option if you were wishing to go down that route.
How long has the mass been present?
Ok. Given her age and concurrent conditions I would probably be less inclined to operate as the anaesthetic probably gives higher risk than the mass (even if it were to be malignant). So monitoring may be sensible, if it continues to grow or becomes infected or bleeds regularly then that may alter that decision.
Ultimately there is no completely right or wrong answer but we want to try and avoid such high risk anaesthetics where possible
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