What is a sarcoid?

Sarcoids in horses, figures and facts to know about them.

If you want to better understand what are equine sarcoids, we have created these infographics to help you. You will learn which horses are most affected, their localization, the different types and the medical treatments to cure them. You are not the only one to be lost in front of this horse skin tumor.

Many horses and donkeys are affected by skin tumors: sarcoids, melanomas, fibrosarcomas, squamous cell carcinomas. The most frequent skin tumors remain sarcoids at 36.8%, which look like a wart but are not. It seems that they are caused by flies who spread the bovine papillomavirus by landing on old wounds, scars, injuries or insects’ bites; they are not contagious for other horses, for cattle, for pets or for humans. It is not a painful or itchy skin tumor, but it can be bleeding or annoying depending on its localization (in girth area) and can reduce the value of the horse. It frequently appears on the face: around the eyes (periorbital sarcoid) and mouth or in the ear; or on sheath or chest. The most affected are younger horses or, due to a genetic predisposition, breeds like: quarter horses, Appaloosas and Arabian horses. We count 5 different types of sarcoids: occult or flat, fibroblastic, mixt, nodular and verrucous. 50% of horses with a unique tumor will develop multiple tumors once older. We observe more multiple lesions in the United Kingdom compared to unique ones in other countries.

Sarcoids must be treated ; even if they are not likely to reoccur, they won’t disappear by themselves and can burst. Among the numerous ways to heal it we find either medically: cryotherapy to freeze the base of the tumor, laser removal, BCG, brachytherapy, electrochemotherapy, surgery, chemotherapy (fluorouracil, cisplatin, mitomycin) or naturally like homeopathy or herbal treatments: turmeric, fluoride toothpaste, Xxterra, Liverpool cream created by Professor Knottenbelt, …

In this infographic you will find the comparison of success rates between some medical treatments; electrochemotherapy being the most effective.

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