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Cancer Surgery for Dogs Greenville SC

The best time to obtain clean margins during surgical excision of a malignant tumor is the first time. The most aggressive, i.e. mitotically active, cells are not located in the main, visible or palpable mass, but within its "legs" or tentacles.

Randall C Thomas
(864) 385-6565
393 Woods Lake Road
Greenville, SC
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Mon-Thurs: 8:30 am - 5 pm; Fri: 9-noon

Pet Med Mobile
(864) 232-2718
707 E Stone Ave
Greenville, SC

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Pleasantburg Veterinary Clinic Inc
(864) 232-6445
634 S Pleasantburg Dr
Greenville, SC

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Greenville HUmane Society
(864) 242-3626
328 Furman Hall Rd.
Greenville, SC
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Pleasantburg Veterinary Clinic, Inc.
(864) 232-6445
634 S. Pleasantburg Drive
Greenville, SC
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Veterinary, Grooming, Boarding
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8-6 M-F 8-12 S

Richland Creek Animal Clinic
(864) 232-2718
707 E Stone Ave
Greenville, SC

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Welsh, Paula, Dvm - North Greenville Animal Hosp
(864) 244-8281
1300 Stallings Rd
Greenville, SC

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North Greenville Animal Hosp
(864) 244-8281
1300 Stallings Rd
Greenville, SC

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Haywood Road Animal Hospital
(864) 288-7472
520 Haywood Rd
Greenville, SC

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Ambassador Animal Hospital Pa
(864) 271-1112
715 Wade Hampton Blvd
Greenville, SC

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Cancer Surgery Never as Good as First Time

Nasal fibrosarcoma in an 8-year-old German shepherd. Photo courtesy of Dr. Phil Zeltzman
Music critics claim that Sade’s song “Never as Good as the First Time” applies to personal relationships. We beg to differ. She was clearly referring to cancer surgery.

The best time to obtain clean margins during surgical excision of a malignant tumor is the first time. The most aggressive, i.e. mitotically active, cells are not located in the main, visible or palpable mass, but within its “legs” or tentacles. This is why it is so important to obtain clean margins the first time around.

Dirty margins will require radiation therapy, chemotherapy or a more aggressive excision to prevent a recurrence. Re-excision is always more complicated because it is difficult, if not impossible, to know how invasive we should be. The original tumor may have seeded cells in multiple tissue planes during the first attempt.

One easy way to think of the cancerous mass during the first excision is to consider it as grossly infected (read: covered in pus). Therefore, it shouldn’t come in contact with healthy tissues. Gloves, instruments and drapes should be changed before closing the surgical site.

It also is important to remove tumors en bloc. In other words, the main mass should not be shelled out with the intention of removing more tissue afterward.

Mast cell tumor on the hock of a 6-year-old boxer. Photo courtesy of Dr. Phil Zeltzman
The deep margin ofte...

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