My boxer is 6 yrs old and I just took her to the vet and she was diagnosed with a basil cell place on her belly. He put her on steroids for a month then said he would take the spot off if it didnt clear up? Does that sound right? My dog is my baby and she means a lot to me. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks! Bethany
There are several kinds of basal cell tumors. There are Trichoblastoma's, basal cell carcinomas, and basosquamous cell carcinomas. The first is totally benign and surgical excisional is curative. The second two are also relatively benign, but can be locally invasive (in the skin and very rarely metastasize elsewhere). The treatment of choice is complete surgical excision with wide margins. The prognosis under these circumstances is very good.
A veterinarian might put a dog on steroids for skin cancer if a definitive diagnosis had not been obtained by a biopsy. For instance, if the skin biopsy result said "suggestive of basal cell carcinoma" or if the mass was too large to remove, and if, in removing the mass there would be too little skin left to close the incision adequately; or lastly, if your dog is a poor surgical candidate, since anesthesia might be risky for your dog.
I would just ask your vet. Maybe there was a misunderstanding, or the biopsy result was not definitive.
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