Tumor Treatment at the EMC
Most equine tumors involve the skin, and common skin tumors include equine sarcoids, squamous cell carcinomas, and melanomas. Surgeons at the Equine Medical Center use a multi-modal approach to treating skin tumors in order to optimize the chances of successful treatment and dramatically reduce reoccurrence rates.
Treatment often consists of a combination of laser-assisted surgical excision and ablation along with intralesional and topical chemotherapeutic agents. The local delivery of chemotherapy drugs avoids the many side effects commonly associated with their systemic use.
Click on a thumbnail image to view a larger image.
The advantage of laser surgery for treating tumors
- Much more versatile than a scalpel, surgical lasers deliver light or heat to incise, coagulate, or vaporize tissue.
- Laser surgical sites bleed and swell less than conventional surgical wounds. The carbon dioxide laser creates a clean, bloodless incision and can also vaporize tissue masses.
- The carbon dioxide laser is controlled enough that corneal tumors can be vaporized from the surface of the eye.
- Surgical procedures performed with lasers can often be performed on standing horses on an outpatient basis. The horses leave with no external wound.
- Use of cisplatin-containing biodegradable beads for treatment of cutaneous neoplasia in equidae: 59 cases (20002004) co-authored by Dr. Ken Sullins (PDF)
- Excision as treatment of dermal melanomatosis in horses: 11 cases (19942000) co-authored by Dr. Ken Sullins (PDF)
- Treatment of appendicular osteosarcoma in a horse co-authored by Dr. Ken Sullins (PDF)
- Elective Surgery for Horses by Dr. Nat White (PDF)