Sarcoids What Do I Do?? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 17 Old 05-24-2017, 12:27 PM
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The main reason why sarcoids cause so many problems (or don't cause any at all) is that there are 6 different types of sarcoid plus equine papilloma and some fungal infections which look like sarcoids but aren't and the latter two are most likely what a horse has when they disappear and don't come back after being treated with toothpaste or some other concoction. They would have disappeared in time anyway.
Most vets will tell clients not to use toothpaste or any other potion without knowing what type you're treating as you could make the sarcoid a lot worse if you get it wrong.
A biopsy is the only real way to confirm what you're dealing with but vets can be nervous about doing one if they suspect its the type of sarcoid that will get worse if meddled with.
The 6 types are:
Occult or flat sarcoids, Malevolent sarcoids, Nodular sarcoids, Mixed sarcoids, Verrucous sarcoids and Fibroplastic sarcoids
You can google the names to get more details and photos.


The most successful treatment I've used on a horse that had terrible sarcoids that were spreading and made riding her impossible and caused her a lot of discomfort and pain in the summer months especially was cryotherapy (freezing). She was worth every penny of the cost, if she hadn't been I would have had her euthanized. She was left with some areas of white hair and some where the hair never grew back at all but the sarcoids didn't come back and we had her a long time and still had contact with her new owners after we sold her

Just winging it is not a plan
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post #12 of 17 Old 05-24-2017, 01:13 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by egrogan View Post
When I bought my current horse, she had a large "occult" sarcoid under her armpit, and not too long after I bought her, two "angry" nodular sarcoids appeared over the top of the occult sarcoid (types of equine sarcoids: Types of Equine Sarcoid found in horses). The nodules came up out of nowhere, and started dripping blood. In that case, I felt I couldn't ignore it. The vet did a series of injections and then followed it up with Aldara cream. This is the thread I posted about it, it includes some pictures so you can see what it looked like in "angry" phase and healing phase.

I read a lot about the Crest toothpaste method when I was deciding what to do, and while I can respect that some people seem to have had some success with it, I wanted something more research based if we were going to pursue treatment. University of Minnesota has done a lot of research on the Aldrara treatment, you can read that here

I agree with the general advice not to touch it unless you have to. In the last 6 months, my mare has developed an aural plaque in one ear, and during our spring check-up this year the vet and I decided to just watch it and not touch it. If I were in your position, I'd want a vet's advice on each of the sarcoids individually.

One other thought- you say she's grey. Could they actually be melanomas and not sarcoids?
I have looked into melanomas and have seen melanomas in another horse I worked with, but these don't seem to be that. They are much nastier then the sarcoids you pictured in you thread. It's been pretty miserable out so I haven't gotten pictures but they are about the size of quarter and scrabby/bloody/gross. One bothers her for sure, the one in the cinch area is sort of crusty and could potentially bleed and get worse so it FOR SURE has to go.

These pictures are similar to what she has. The not so severe one is like the one on her lips and one of the ones on her neck. The bad one is like the one on her shoulder and getting similar to the one on her girth area. Again, I will definitely have the vet look at them, but I want to get as much feedback from others as I can as I really can't afford a vet bill right now to have them removed/treated there. If push comes to shove, of course I will have do what needs to be done in the end. I'm just putting out some feelers.
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post #13 of 17 Old 05-24-2017, 01:17 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jaydee View Post
The main reason why sarcoids cause so many problems (or don't cause any at all) is that there are 6 different types of sarcoid plus equine papilloma and some fungal infections which look like sarcoids but aren't and the latter two are most likely what a horse has when they disappear and don't come back after being treated with toothpaste or some other concoction. They would have disappeared in time anyway.
Most vets will tell clients not to use toothpaste or any other potion without knowing what type you're treating as you could make the sarcoid a lot worse if you get it wrong.
A biopsy is the only real way to confirm what you're dealing with but vets can be nervous about doing one if they suspect its the type of sarcoid that will get worse if meddled with.
The 6 types are:
Occult or flat sarcoids, Malevolent sarcoids, Nodular sarcoids, Mixed sarcoids, Verrucous sarcoids and Fibroplastic sarcoids
You can google the names to get more details and photos.


The most successful treatment I've used on a horse that had terrible sarcoids that were spreading and made riding her impossible and caused her a lot of discomfort and pain in the summer months especially was cryotherapy (freezing). She was worth every penny of the cost, if she hadn't been I would have had her euthanized. She was left with some areas of white hair and some where the hair never grew back at all but the sarcoids didn't come back and we had her a long time and still had contact with her new owners after we sold her
I will ask my vet about this, I don't have the money right now to spend a fortune, but I will definitely do what I need to to fix these. I'm pretty sure she has occult sarcoids but that's only my diagnoses, not my vets. I hope to ride her in (bareback, I don't have a trailer) when the weather over here clears up to allow me to.

~ If God made anything more amazing than the horse, he kept it for himself.
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post #14 of 17 Old 05-24-2017, 01:22 PM
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^ Agree


We had a horse that had one inside his ear, he was constantly rubbing that ear, and this made it an issue to put his earplugs in for shooting. The vet diagnosed the type of sarcoid and froze it then gave us a cream for it. Another horse had one on the shoulder point and it was constantly rubbed and bloody from the breast collar or him leaning on the trailer walls, corral panels, etc. The vet diagnosed this one and it required cutting it out and removing a root, no cream was prescribed. Neither horse ever had them return, mind you both horses had these sarcoids forming when we bought them and both were switched to the feeding program we use.


A friend of mine had a grey horse that had a sarcoid and she thought it returned, it turned out to be melanoma like some of the other posters have mentioned.
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post #15 of 17 Old 05-24-2017, 01:50 PM
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Agree with Jaydee that sarcoids, as well as any tumor, can vary from non aggressive to invasive, and thus finding type of any tumor, not just what kind is important, and why there are pathology labs!
Sarcoids are usually benign, as is melanoma in horses, unlike as in humans where malignant melanoma is always life threatening
Like Jaydee, I have had several types of sarcoids in horses, and also had a benign one removed using cyro therapy
I also had a scarcoid on a young stallion, that occurred in a former injury, and that became very aggressive and invasive to the point I had to have him put down, after trying surgery, chemical topical anti tumor treatment, ligation and several other techniques, including repeat surgery.
That sarcoid started out in the front of his one pastern, and eventually spread to the entire pastern, having huge ulceration lesions at the back also
All tumors, be it breast or otherwise, have tumor type, which includes aggressiveness, often directly related to how abnormal or differentiated those cells are from 'normal', plus afew other criteria , which are not important, unless you are looking down that microscope, LOL!
The important part for that layman, is to get a diagnosis based on not visual appearance alone,which is termed, 'gross examination, but on microscopic examination, which is definitive and thus also directs treatment
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post #16 of 17 Old 05-24-2017, 01:51 PM
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Agree with Jaydee that sarcoids, as well as any tumor, can vary from non aggressive to invasive, and thus finding type of any tumor, not just what kind is important, and why there are pathology labs!
Sarcoids are usually benign, as is melanoma in horses, unlike as in humans where malignant melanoma is always life threatening
Like Jaydee, I have had several types of sarcoids in horses, and also had a benign one removed using cyro therapy
I also had a scarcoid on a young stallion, that occurred in a former injury, and that became very aggressive and invasive to the point I had to have him put down, after trying surgery, chemical topical anti tumor treatment, ligation and several other techniques, including repeat surgery.
That sarcoid started out in the front of his one pastern, and eventually spread to the entire pastern, having huge ulceration lesions at the back also
All tumors, be it breast or otherwise, have tumor type, which includes aggressiveness, often directly related to how abnormal or differentiated those cells are from 'normal', plus afew other criteria , which are not important, unless you are looking down that microscope, LOL!
The important part for that layman, is to get a diagnosis based on not visual appearance alone,which is termed, 'gross examination, but on microscopic examination, which is definitive and thus also directs treatment
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post #17 of 17 Old 05-25-2017, 11:54 AM
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My gray mare has two sarcoids and numerous melanomas - the risks of treating/removing hers outweigh any benefit. I've mentally cataloged them all and watch for changes. The Vet looks her over annually, but unless or until they interfere with normal bodily function, we are leaving them be.


The 2"x3" sarcoid on the side of her front cannon bone affects a lot of leg, considering she's a dainty 14.1hh Arab. Flies are always drawn to that spot so I apply SWAT fly ointment in summer, and in winter I need to make sure that skin doesn't get dry or it'll crack and bleed.

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