Oral Mass Removal - Abbe
In April of 2015, Abbe, a 4 year old female spayed Labrador Retriever, had a growth on her gums removed at her primary veterinarian. The biopsy results revealed it to be an Acanthomatous Ameloblastoma, a benign epulis or oral mass. Less than 3 months later, the mass had returned.
Even though the mass was found to be benign, it could continue to grow possibly covering the teeth or causing the teeth to shift. In some cases, this benign mass can cause pain while eating or can begin to bleed. Once these masses are detected, they should be removed as quickly as possible to prevent complications. However, simply removing the mass again would most likely result it returning again.
Dr. Aman recommended that Abbe undergo a partial mandibulectomy to remove the section of the jaw where the mass was growing. This would make it less likely for the mass to return. Abbe had the procedure the following day.
During this procedure, Abbe had a section of her left lower jaw removed and the tissue was sent to Antech Laboratories for analysis.
The photos to the right show Abbe's mouth pre and post-surgery. As you can see, an entire section of the jaw, bone and all, has been removed.
A week later, Abbe's biopsy results came back and the tumor was revealed to be a slightly different epulis than was orignally suspected, a fibromatous and ossifying epulis. To the left is a picture of Abbe's histopathology showing cells from the mass in her mouth.
A fibromatous epulis is the most common type of non-cancerous oral mass found in dogs. They normally are found on the gum tissue and can sometimes be removed simply by removing the gum tissue. In more severe cases, surrounding teeth and bone may need to be removed.
On the other hand, an ossifying epulis is a more severe tumor that can become malignant and removal usually involves removing a portion of the jaw bone.
As Abbe had a section of her jaw removed along with the mass, her prognosis is very good and the mass will most likely not return. Patients who undergo a partial mandibulectomy generally adjust well after surgery and Abbe is no exception!