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Q. The cat has had a black scab on his head.originally I was told it was skin cancer, since then I believe it may be a parasite. It wont heal

Answered By
DR. CHRISTIE LONG, D.V.M., C.V.A.

A. Another possibility is that this lesion is something called an eosinophilic plaque. These are often allergy-related, and appear as scabs on the head (and sometimes other areas, but very frequently we see them on the face and head) of cats. Often they will improve with a change to a hypoallergenic diet, but many times cats need steroid drugs to reduce the immune system's reaction, which is what's causing the lesion. Unfortunately it takes a biopsy to tell the difference between an eosinophilic plaque and cancer, and since cancer is life-threatening this is definitely a procedure I recommend.

Answered By
DAVID ELBEZE, DVM, MRCVS

A. I doubt it is a parasite, but this can be riled out by doing a skin scraping at the vet. A tumor can also be confirmed by checking a stained slide from this black scab.

If it has defined margins and feels movable above the skin, it would probably be a good idea to have it removed surgically before it becomes too big or attached to the tissue underneath the skin.


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