Poster Presentation 64th International Conference of the Wildlife Disease Association 2015

Strontium plesiotherapy as an adjunct treatment for squamous cell carcinoma in a Pygmy Bearded Dragon (Pogona henrylawsoni) (#192)

Jayne Weller 1
  1. Animal Referral Hospital, Homebush, NSW, Australia

Neoplasia is a complex process of abnormal tissue growth. As in all animals, neoplastic processes can occur in reptiles and have been documented in all orders in the class Reptilia, with snakes, lizards and chelonians most commonly affected. While cancer was once thought to be uncommon in reptiles, it is becoming a more common diagnosis with increased ownership of reptiles as pets and presentation of wildlife to veterinary clinics.  With the advancement of chemotherapeutics in companion animals, animal owners now expect that chemotherapy is an available treatment option for reptiles. This case report describes a case of a four-and-a-half-year-old Pygmy Bearded Dragon (Pogona henrylawsoni) that presented with a mass on the skin of the right upper lip. The mass measured 5mm in diameter. The mass had grown quickly in the last week but was not invading the deep tissue or bone. A fine needle aspirate of the mass revealed abnormal epithelial cells. The mass was removed with inadequate margins due to location and submitted for histopathology. Strontium plesiotherapy at a dose of 100 gray was used by direct contact of a strontium-90 probe to the surgical site one week into recovery. At the time of writing this abstract, the mass had not regrown during the three months following therapy.