Treatment Options for Mast Cell Tumor of the Eyelid in Dogs

Lili Duda, VMD
Last Modified: November 1, 2001

Question:

Dear OncoLink "Ask the Experts,"
Our 4 1/2 year old mixed breed female dog was recently diagnosed with a small intermediate grade mast cell tumor on her left eyelid. We understand that diagnosis of such a tumor in this location is quite rare. Some of the tumor was removed surgically (when it was presumed to be a cyst). Chest x-rays and abdominal ultrasound were normal. We are awaiting the results of lymph node aspiration.

After consulting three doctors in addition to our regular veterinarian, suggested treatments have included: steroid treatment alone; cryosurgery to remove more of the eyelid; radiation therapy alone; complete surgical removal of the eye to attain adequate margins; or complete surgical removal in conjunction with radiation therapy.

We are concerned with stopping the spread of cancer and giving her the best chance for long-term survival. However, the location of the tumor makes treatment difficult, as most recommended treatments will result in partial blindness. We would appreciate any direction you could give us.

Answer:

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