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Squamous cell carcinoma of the eye

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  • Squamous cell carcinoma of the eye

    Hello,

    I am interested in possibly purchasing a horse that was treated for squamous cell carcinoma of the eye last fall. According to the owner, it was caught early. She took him to a top clinic for treatment and they believe they got it all and he will be fine. I just wondered what your thoughts or experiences might be regarding the likelihood of it reoccurring and whether you would buy a horse with this history. I will talk to my vet as well but always appreciate peoples' thoughts on this board. Thank you!!

  • #2
    Coincidentally I was just doing a search for info on squamous cell carcinomas and your post was the first one that popped up. I have a pinto broodmare who developed a SCC under her tail three years ago. It was about the size of a golf ball. My vet removed it, sent it to the lab to confirm, and we proceeded with five sessions of chemo. Until tonight, she has had no further problems...

    Tonight, I was feeding and she turned away from me and I caught a glimpse of swelling and my heart sank. I pulled her out of the pasture and it has come back with a vengeance. It is about the size of three baseballs, has contorted her rectum and vaginal area, and I'm already trying to accept the fact that this probably spells the end to her. I will be calling my vet to come out Monday morning but I don't hold out much hope.

    When we removed the original SCC, and after the chemo treatments were completed, I asked my vet what the chances were of it returning. She told me I would be very very lucky is this did not return. Tonight, her words came back to haunt me.

    My thoughts for your situation - I would run away from a horse with a prior history of SCC as fast as I could. Maybe someone can offer some success stories but I am unable to.
    Susan N.

    Don't get confused between my personality & my attitude. My personality is who I am, my attitude depends on who you are.

    Comment


    • #3
      I know from first hand experience that squamous cell carcinomas of the eye can be very aggressive and invade the whole head, deep into the sinus cavities and so on. I lost a horse to that who was not treated early enough. I have has clients lose horses to it as well because it kept recurring.
      If the missed ONE cancerous cell, it could recur. As well if he has a lot of white around his eyes, he is susceptable to developing it anyway.

      Even if the vets think they got it all, given my own experiences with it, I would not touch the horse with a ten foot pole.
      JMO.
      Patty Stiller CNBBT,CNBF,CLS, CE
      Natural Balance Certified Lameness Specialist ,instructor.
      www.hoofcareonline.com

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      • #4
        its magalinant growths and horse should be pts as moer than likely has a brain tumour

        Comment


        • #5
          its magalinant growths and horse should be pts as moer than likely has a brain tumour
          please do provide a link for the research behind this statement.

          my anecdotal experience: I have a pony with SCC in his eye corners. they have not changed in two years. I am pleased and lucky. who knows how long that will be the case?

          meanwhile he is an awesome kick/pull pony for my 8yo son and we have had a blast with him at Pony Club, riding in the pasture and even I love to take him on the trail. he is over 25 years old, under 14hh and cute as a button.

          that said, not sure I'd purchase one knowing he had them unless the horse was really cheap (like free) and I wouldn't suffer unduly if I got to spend no more than 2-5 years with him.

          Comment


          • #6
            I had a SCC frozen off my white TB's eye lid - not invading the eye - and the vet felt the treatment would be a 100% complete cure. Just keep vigilant for any reoccurrence. I suppose if the tumor was IN the eye itself there might be a different prognosis. If I liked the horse, I'd be sure to talk to the vet.
            www.crosscreeksporthorses.com
            Breeders of Painted Thoroughbreds and Uniquely Painted Irish Sport Horses in Northeast Oklahoma

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            • #7
              Ahh, a subject near and dear to my heart.

              My horse just had surgery for this last month to remove the third eyelid. According to the surgeon most of the time when they do that surgery it never comes back and you're probably done with it. Another vet commented that they had good results with using a cream. I think it would have to depend on where the carcinoma was. He said you don't catch it early it can spread to the eyeball and then you're looking at a corneal resection or removal of the eyeball.

              My question would be did the people that own the horse do an actual biopsy and do they know for sure that it was even squamous; or was it something more like a scratch that developed granular tissue? They look similar and the eye area is really hard to biopsy and get a definitive diagnosis. If the biopsy came back with a low index the squamous might have been there for a long time.

              There are many different kinds of cancer, just because a horse had squamous doesn't mean that they have or are going to develop a brain tumor.

              Anyway, as always, ask your vet. Good luck.

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                Thanks guys! Not surprisingly, I guess it comes down to - talk to the vet LOL! Given the bad luck I have had with horses though, I think I am inclined to take a pass. Its a shame because he is a very nice horse.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I have a squamous cell carcinoma horror story that is VERY unlikely to happen, but it did to me so I thought I would share. My chestnut TB gelding was diagnosed with squamous cell on his third eyelid in 98'. He went through radiation and had the majority of his third eye lid removed (they are unable to remove all of the third eyelid without enucleating the eye), luckly the margins came out clean so he was able to keep his eye. We had no more problems with that eye until a tumor returned where his third eyelid was in December 06'. My vet removed the tumor at the farm, but it grew back so I took him to Auburn in April 07'. The biopsy came back inconclusive so we opted to treat it as a squamous cell carcinoma due to his past history. Unfortunately the pathology came back as hemangiosarcoma which is fatal. We enucleated the eye to give him comfort and as much time as we could in May 08'. He was healthy and happy until September 08' when he began his downward slide and unfortunately he lost his battle November 3, 2008. The vets exlplained to me, though rare, when he had his original radiation it had mutated the cells and thus why we had hemangiosarcoma almost ten years later. I will never look at squamous cell the same way again. I never in a million years would have thought that it would ultimately lead to my geldings death. Good luck on your horse search.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I had an Appy gelding who had SCC of the eye...the vets at UT-Knoxville removed the tumors. Approximately a year later we had his third eyelids removed as the tumors had returned. He went completely blind (from cataracts and previous damage from the tumors and uvietis). I competed him up thru 2nd level dressage before having to put him down from colic five years later. A necropsy revealed no signs of cancer.

                    My vet told me that had we caught the tumors earlier...that he probably would have been fine as the type he had was usually confined to the eye and didn't spread. I guess you'll hear different things from different vets. I'd consult with an animal opthomologist and get some more information.
                    A poorly fitted saddle hampers both horse and rider.
                    https://www.facebook.com/Talley-Ho-Saddle-Services

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                    • #11
                      One of my horses had a SCC removed from his eye 5 years ago. It was caught early and so far he is completely fine.
                      “And live like you ain’t afraid to die. And don’t be scared, just enjoy your ride.” Chris Ledoux ~ The Ride

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by jlgordon15 View Post
                        I have a squamous cell carcinoma horror story that is VERY unlikely to happen, but it did to me so I thought I would share. My chestnut TB gelding was diagnosed with squamous cell on his third eyelid in 98'. He went through radiation and had the majority of his third eye lid removed (they are unable to remove all of the third eyelid without enucleating the eye), luckly the margins came out clean so he was able to keep his eye. We had no more problems with that eye until a tumor returned where his third eyelid was in December 06'. My vet removed the tumor at the farm, but it grew back so I took him to Auburn in April 07'. The biopsy came back inconclusive so we opted to treat it as a squamous cell carcinoma due to his past history. Unfortunately the pathology came back as hemangiosarcoma which is fatal. We enucleated the eye to give him comfort and as much time as we could in May 08'. He was healthy and happy until September 08' when he began his downward slide and unfortunately he lost his battle November 3, 2008. The vets exlplained to me, though rare, when he had his original radiation it had mutated the cells and thus why we had hemangiosarcoma almost ten years later. I will never look at squamous cell the same way again. I never in a million years would have thought that it would ultimately lead to my geldings death. Good luck on your horse search.
                        The ending of this story could be mine, We had a belgian draft who had one third eyelid removal followed by the opposite eye being enucleated in May of 08. We had a great summer with him even though during his surgery we were informed that the cancer had spread all throughout his nasal cavity and his brain. We lost him 11/4/08. Great horse would never purchase one with the same problem again.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I had a paint years ago who had this. they removed his third eye lid. he is still fine. Is that what happened with the one you are looking at?
                          Humans don’t mind duress, in fact they thrive on it. What they mind is not feeling necessary. –Sebastian Junger

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by fnSara View Post
                            The ending of this story could be mine, We had a belgian draft who had one third eyelid removal followed by the opposite eye being enucleated in May of 08. We had a great summer with him even though during his surgery we were informed that the cancer had spread all throughout his nasal cavity and his brain. We lost him 11/4/08. Great horse would never purchase one with the same problem again.
                            So sorry to hear about your loss. We suspect that his cancer had spread to hes brain, spleen, liver, and possibly his heart due to the location and the fact that hemangiosarcoma is a vascular cancer. The ultimate reason that we had to put him down was it had spread to his sheath and he began to hemorrhage from the tumors. I was just fortunate enough to get over a year of healthy horse. When he began to go down hill, he went down quick. He began to hemorrhage on Halloween night but fortunately we were able to stop the bleeding enough to have him last the weekend. The weather was beautiful in the 70's so he got a bath and I got to spend a large amount of quality time with him.

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