The Discovery

On Thursday, August 3rd, a friend brought Katie into her stall and pointed out a softball-sized growth under her tail that seemed to have appeared overnight.  It was very painful to her, and seemed infected. 

I placed an emergency call to my vet, as well as another new vet in the area, to whom I had been thinking of moving my business. As luck would have it, my normal vet never returned my emergency call. However, the new vet, a dynamic young lady named Jennifer, returned my call immediately and, based upon the description given her, told me she would save me an emergency visit charge and see my horse first thing the following morning.

The following morning the melanoma had ruptured, leaving a black, inky substance (melanin) splashed all over the skin on her tail, buttocks and legs. Katie appeared to be feeling a bit relieved.  My vet cleaned her up, squeezed more melanin out of the lesion and took photos of the original site to show to a fellow surgeon for advice. The melanoma appears to be approximately 2" long and located subcutaneously on her anus.

Because current theories indicate that these melanomas tend to spread when excised, most vets will not remove a melanoma surgically unless it is impeding a bodily function. Jennifer prescribed 1600mg of Cimetidine 2x/daily along with a 5-day course of 6400mg 2x/day Sulfamethoxazole / Trimethoprim antibiotics and 1cc bute 2x/day for 3 days.


 

I had recently run across a product called Bio-Sponge which has been known to save lives of horses diagnosed with clostridium perfringens, a form of 'food poisoning', which can kill horses with 24 hours. Since the product absorbs and rids the body of toxins and free-radicals, I figured it couldn't hurt Katie to help purge her system of the toxins released when the melanoma ruptured.

I have just ordered an herbal supplement known as "Nublada's Cure", from Earth Angel Products. I intend to add this, too, to Katie's daily rations. No information exists regarding any side effects or loss of effectiveness produced by mixing these supplements, so I am taking a stab in the dark.

I have written to all the Arabian breeders I know, as well as both horse owners and veterinarians that have published information on this topic, to receive advice since my thought process at this point is to be as aggressive as possible in treating this melanoma. I am, at this writing, awaiting replies.