Friday, August 17, 2012

1047. Dwarf hamster with tumour/wart from Beijing

Hello Dr Sing,
Thank you for sharing priceless info regarding hamster's condition on the website. I found you on this site and I'm relieved to know that there is a possibility to address the condition.(http://www.
I'm writing from Beijing and I seek some advise regarding a growth on my hamster which I now know is called a wart. My hamster is 2+ years old and he had this wart growing on the side of his toe since January this year. Occasionally there is pimple-like 'head' that pokes up, and I have tried to extracted it myself. We also did consulted a vet and she content is skin cells & sebum related.
The wart seemed to have steadied in size, but the pimple-like thing would come back after we extracted it.
I've attached a picture of the wart, and the size of it. Please have a look.
I would like to know if its possible to surgically have this removed safely - cut off at wart stalk?
Will there be a lot of bleeding and is it high risks?
I understand that we have to put him under gas isofluorane.
I appreciate your time and advise, and look forward to hear from you regarding this matter as I will talk to my local vet to have this administered.
I go to an international vet, but hamsters are not common patients here. So I would like to be informed and perhaps refer my local vet to your website for references as well.
Thank you in advance and I really hope to hear from you soon.


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Thank you for your e-mail.
Surgical excision under anaesthesia is the solution.

1. If there is a stalk attached to the skin, the vet will just cut off the stalk, apply potassium permanganate powder to control the bleeding or apply pressure bandage. 
2. If there is no stalk, there will be a big piece of skin cut off, exposing the bone, muscles, ligaments and tendons. If the wound is <5mm after="after" be="be" br="br" cared="cared" for="for" infection.="infection." it="it" needs="needs" prevent="prevent" surgery="surgery" to="to" well="well">3. If there is no stalk and the tumour has invaded deep into the bones, then amputation of the 5th digit + tumour will be the solution. 6/0 stitching may be needed to close the skin wound.
4. Electro-excision, using electricity is an excellent procedure for this case. Electro- excision controls the bleeding.   

Overall, the surgery is low risk and is done in 2 seconds. The anaesthesia is the high risk in old hamsters. The bleeding in this surgery usually does not kill the hamster as the bleeding can be controlled. You may need to locate a vet who is comfortable in performing hamster surgery.

Please let me know the good news after surgery. has some software bugs as the above 2 images were uploaded in the correct position but appears in an abnormal position 

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