Don’t Wait to Aspirate: JD Grows New Bumps

Nobody likes to find new bumps on their dog, particularly since one was a mast cell tumor already.

Since having his bumps aspirated and a mast cell tumor removed last October, JD decided to grow a couple of new ones. Again, they were quite small and there was the possibility that he might have run into a branch and that’s how he got them.

We waited a couple of weeks to see if they would go away. But they did not.

Don't Wait to Aspirate

Taking a closer look

It was time to have a closer look at them.

We set up an appointment to have them checked, measured, mapped and aspirated. Waiting to find out what the bumps are is always unnerving. Just because he had one mast cell tumor it didn’t mean these would be tumors also but it didn’t mean they wouldn’t.

When the vet examined them, one of them felt nice and soft but the other one, on his hip, was harder and felt suspicious.

Don’t wait to aspirate

They got both aspirated.

The stuff on the slides looked the same from both. Liquid-like and shiny, like a squirt of oil. That was a good sign because that’s what stuff from lipomas, benign fatty tumors, looks like. But it still needed to be checked properly under a microscope.

The vet said she has to let them dry a bit and then she’ll look at them. Depending on what she sees she will either send it off to the lab or be done with it. She was going to call us that day.

Waiting for the results

We got no phone call that day, or the next, or the next.

At first, we figured they were just busy. But then thoughts start creeping into the brain. When Cookie had her ultrasound done, the vet didn’t call because it looked suspicious. She sent it off and figured she’d wait until she hears back from them so she has something conclusive to tell us.

Sounds good in theory but when you’re not getting any news, you figure it’s bad news anyway. As it turned out in Cookie’s case, it wasn’t, but could have been.

When we weren’t hearing back regarding JD’s cytology, we figured something looked suspicious too.

On day four we finally got the phone call. The vet was apologizing profusely–she’s actually been calling since day one but copied the phone number wrong and was calling who-knows-where. After nobody was picking up the phone for three days, she decided to double-check the number. And that’s where the gremlin was.

The good news

I think she felt even more badly when she realized what the delay made us think. However, she only had good news for us.

There was nothing suspicious on those slides at all.

Just fat cells and a few epithelial cells. Everything looked so good they didn’t even send it out. There were no doubts that both of those bumps are lipomas.

JD is in a clear this time.

We will continue to keep an eye on these and on a lookout for any new ones. But for now, there is nothing to worry about.

Knowing is always better than not knowing

There is nothing to worry about and we KNOW that.

Why would owners, or even vets, be reluctant to do fine needle aspirate beats me. The whole procedure is quick, easy, and painless. It cost less than $40 Canadian. You do this and then you know. You either get to relax or take action.

Why not just aspirate?

There is not a single reason against doing that. And there are a number of reasons why do it. When you find a bump on your dog, just do it.

Don’t wait, aspirate.

Related articles:
Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog: What Is that Bump?
JD’s Biopsy Results Revealed Mast Cell Tumor: You Don’t Know What the Bump Is Unless You Look at the Cells
Canine Mast Cell Tumors: JD’s Mast Cell Tumor Diagnostics, Strategy, and Treatment

Further reading:
See Something, Do Something: Why Wait? Aspirate

Categories: CancerConditionsDog health advocacyFine needle aspirateLumps and bumpsMast cell tumors (MTC)Real-life StoriesSymptoms

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Jana Rade

I am a graphic designer, dog health advocate, writer, and author. Jasmine, the Rottweiler of my life, was the largest female from her litter. We thought we were getting a healthy dog. Getting a puppy from a backyard breeder was our first mistake. Countless veterinary visits without a diagnosis or useful treatment later, I realized that I had to take Jasmine's health care in my own hands. I learned the hard way that merely seeing a vet is not always enough. There is more to finding a good vet than finding the closest clinic down the street. And, sadly, there is more to advocating for your dog's health than visiting a veterinarian. It should be enough, but it often is not. With Jasmine, it took five years to get a diagnosis. Unfortunately, other problems had snowballed for that in the meantime. Jasmine's health challenges became a crash course in understanding dog health issues and how to go about getting a proper diagnosis and treatment. I had to learn, and I had to learn fast. Helping others through my challenges and experience has become my mission and Jasmine's legacy. I now try to help people how to recognize and understand signs of illness in their dogs, how to work with their veterinarian, and when to seek a second opinion. My goal is to save others the steep curve of having to learn things the hard way as I did. That is the mission behind my blog and behind my writing. That is why I wrote Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog, which has turned out being an award-winning guide to dog owners. What I'm trying to share encompasses 20 years of experience.

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