Canine Osteocarcinoma or Ear Infection?

by Anonymous Reader

Example of Dog Osteosarcoma (bone cancer) in Kneed Joint (Stifle)<br>Photo Credit: WSU

Example of Dog Osteosarcoma (bone cancer) in Kneed Joint (Stifle)
Photo Credit: WSU

Reader Question on Canine Osteocarcinoma and Falling Over

Would a CT scan be able to give a definitive answer as to whether or not a mass is benign or malignant? My Vet took a X-ray of my dog and said that it was pretty clear to be cancer however a bony tumor cannot be ruled out. She had a biopsy back in July and it was non-cancer, more of scar tissue buildup,

It's been 3 months and my dog has been experiencing dizzy spells, but ONLY when she shakes her head. We did confirm an ear infection and she is on meds. This doesn't happen any other time but when she shakes her head; tilts to one side, sometimes she falls over and eyes move around. It only last about 6-10 seconds then she is back to normal.

What I do not know is if this new symptom is from the tumor or from the ear infection.

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Aug 17, 2014
Vet Suggestion on Osteocarcinoma and Ear Infection
by: Dr. Jennifer Coates, DVM


The symptoms you describe are more consistent with an ear infection than being somehow related to the tumor in your dog’s leg. A CT scan could provide evidence either for or against the bone lesion being malignant, but the results wouldn’t be definitive.

The only way to know with any certainty is to have another biopsy done, but as you have unfortunately already found out, bone biopsies can sometimes come back as inconclusive. At least the second time around the veterinarian will know that he or she has to be more aggressive in taking the sample, which improves the chances of a meaningful result.

Best of luck,

Jennifer Coates, DVM

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