My 29-year old Arab/QH gelding presented with a genital edema. Trying to clean his sheath proved next to impossible; he was having none of that. So, my veterinarian sedated him and we went to work. What we discovered next, was unexpected and devestating. At the very base of his penis, presumably only visible because of the sedation, were a series of ulcerated tumors. Large tumors. The diagnosis was SCC (Squamos Cell Carcinoma).
Because of his history of having been moved around A LOT before arriving at my place, I immediately dismissed any notion of sending him away for treatment. We are a good 7 hours from Guelph University, 4 hours from the closest clinic doing any sort of equine surgeries. Because of his age, I also dismissed Chemo therapy. However, a new type of treatment had recently made the news: ImmuneFx. Developed by Morphogenesis Inc. in Florida, it had shown VERY promising results with a number of different cancers, including SCC.
I'm not going to go into the specifics of the treatment (they call it a vaccine); you can read up on that yourself. I will mention that it is about as non-invasive a treatment as you can hope for and, that it isn't outrageously expensive. It isn't cheap but, neither are the alternatives. *UPDATE* There is a brand new website: http://ifx-vet.com/
I set out to get more information which proved more difficult than one might expect. Because the treatment was only approved for use in the U.S., the company rep (who was super helpful, btw.) could only release the treatment specifics to a U.S. licensed veterinarian. It took 3 months for me to find a vet in the States, who would get the information and forward it to me.
Why would I even bother, you ask? Since it isn't approved in Canada? Because your vet can request a one case/one patient exception from Health Canada. See this article »