Blizzard, the 3 year old Samoyed, first visited our clinic in May 2006 after having an unfortunate altercation with a motor vehicle. Luckily for him the only injuries he sustained were some deep cuts on his right hind foot which required stitches. However at the time we noticed that he had quite a lump on the very top of his head. A fine needle aspiration was taken of the lump at the time of the surgery, where we attempted to draw out some cells from the lump to look at under the microscope to get an idea of what it was. Unfortunately all we got was lots of red blood cells, which is not useful in trying to come to a diagnosis.
We first performed an incisional biopsy, were a portion of the lump is removed to send to the laboratory for diagnosis. Blizzards lump was consistent with a tumour called a trichoblastoma, which is a relatively common benign tumour arising from hair follicles, usually presenting as singular tumours on the head and neck of dogs. In spite of their sometimes rapid growth they tend not to metastasise and if removed completely they tend not to recur. This was great news for Blizzard, as it meant that all we needed to do was remove the lump with narrow margins, however given its size this was going to be no easy task, and was going to involve some reconstructive surgery to replace the skin on the top of his head once the lump was removed.