Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Breast cancers in dogs

I was operating on some mastectomy cases with Dr Daniel recently. Older unspayed dogs with mammary tumours. It is hard for the owners as anaesthetic risks are high and who would want a dog to die on the operating table? So, the owners generally will not want any surgery when the breast tumours were detected as small nodules as in one case. 7 months later, one tumour had exploded and there was an emotional decision to get the exploding tumour removed.

I am scared of doing such old dog anaesthesias as deaths are always round the corner, due to old age and poor health as well as the presence of spreading breast cancer cells in the old dog's body. Possibly to the lungs. Owing to economic reasons, no lung X-rays are usually done before surgery as heartlanders frequently complain about the high veterinary cost of surgery.  Prices keep going up as evident by the Car's COE prices having shot up today to over $65,000. At its lowest, it was $1.00. So you need another $65,000 on top of your car purchase price. Dr Daniel showed me a video clip of famous US actors e.g. Fast & Furious being asked about the prices of Singapore cars. They underestimated by over 50% when they compared to US car prices.

For heartlanders, it will be much cheaper to get the female dogs spayed when they are young as they seldom get breast cancers in old age. So less expenses and worries. But many don't do it and as a vet, we try to minimise costs but not to the extent of losing money. Young vets don't know how expensive it is to maintain a vet practice with the bureaucrats thinking of ways of adding costs like having to get an autoclave certified for safety every year. Why don't they get those gas cylinder valves in Singapore residences to be certified for safety yearly? There will be much unhappiness as this will add up the costs to the people.  


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