Horse Side Vet Guide ®

Equine Health Resource

Lump, Bump, Growth on Face or Head

Code Orange - Call Your Vet at Their First Available Office Hours

Code Yellow - Contact Your Vet at Your Convenience for an Appointment

Code Orange - Call Your Vet at Their First Available Office Hours

  • If the mass is large, painful or seems to be growing rapidly.

Code Yellow - Contact Your Vet at Your Convenience for an Appointment

  • If the mass is small, non-painful or seems to be only growing slowly.

Skin lumps and bumps are common around the head and face and can be tumors, cysts, abscesses, granulomas, foreign bodies, bruises, hematomas, seromas and a variety of other conditions. When lumps or bumps occur on the head and face, problems and injuries involving the sinuses and teeth must always be considered.

WHAT TO DO

Consider the size, shape and feel of the mass. Compare these things to the opposite side of the face or head as a reference. You can give a small bump a little time to see if it resolves on its own, but you should call your vet with any questions or concerns. A photograph can be very helpful to your vet in determining the nature and severity of a lump or bump. Look elsewhere on the body for similar lumps and document those if they exist.

WHAT YOUR VET DOES

Your vet assess lumps here as they do elsewhere, trying to identify a specific anatomic structure that is associated with the bump (is it associated with skull or skin or mucous membrane?) and trying to determine the type of tissue that forms the bump. They do this through examination of the bump and comparison to similar bumps they have seen in practice.

However, in order to make a definitive diagnosis, tissue must be taken in the form of a biopsy, or the whole mass can be removed surgically and a sample of it submitted to the laboratory for identification.

POSSIBLE TREATMENTS or TherapiesTo Lessen or Resolve the Sign

Author: Doug Thal DVM Dipl. ABVP

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