Description

An epulis is usually a tumor of the gums- usually benign - that consists of overgrown connective tissue. They commonly appear at the outer lining of a tooth, and look like a pink balloon or even a small cauliflower. Epuli can grow up to the size of a golf ball.

Urgency

Urgency level 2

Danger

Danger level 3

Course

An epulis that develops on the gums grows relatively slowly. Its appearance resembles that of a small balloon or cauliflower. Some may grow to the size of a golf ball. Complaints do not occur before the epulis has reached a certain size or becomes infected. As the epulis grows it may dislocate teeth, and/or become punctured by opposing teeth. Epulis are a predisposing factor for the formation of tartar.

Cause

Causes of the condition are unknown. Epulis is the most common neoplasm (abnormal growth) in dogs. Older dogs are more often affected.

Therapy

If an epulis is causing complaints, it may be removed by a small and uncomplicated surgery. A biopsy can reveal whether or not the growth is of malign quality. Reoccurrence of an epulis is common.

Emergency measures

If you have noticed an epulis on your dog, mention it to your veterinarian upon your next visit.