Sunday Dec 2, 2012
A bright sunny Sunday morning. Yesterday, a hamster with a "quail-egg sized" swelling in the right pouch area was admitted by Dr Jason and referred to me. Before I left the surgery and handing over to Dr Jason, I saw a family bringing in a hamster.
I told him that tumours in hamsters should be passed to me if he does not want to operate to remove them. Giving medication would not reduce the big tumours. Some could be abscesses but they had to be lanced. This is the correct approach.
Mr Min showed me the dwarf hamster, 2 years old, male. He had the biggest ovoid lump as hard as a hard-boiled egg. "It could be an impacted food pouch on the right side," I said to Dr Daniel. "It is quite common. A broken seed could have lacerated the pouch and all the food got stuck inside."
We gave the hamster isoflurane gas inside a bottle. The hamster felt sleepy. I took a pair of forceps to evacuate the contents inside the right food pouch. Nothing came out. The hamster protested as he woke up quite easily under gas. Suddenly his eyes popped out from the sockets. "Stop every procedure," I said. "Let the hamster recover. Any handling may cause death."
After 5 minutes, Dr Daniel commenced gas anaesthesia and surgery. "Use the smallest scalpel blade and make a 0.5-cm cut on the skin," I had earlier asked Mr Min to clip off the hair and clean the area.
"It's a red tumour," I saw a bulging swelling under the skin. "Extend the incision to 1.5cm long and shell out the tumour. There is usually a large blood vessel supplying this tumour. Clamp "