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This is a general question, on if cancer surgery on fish can be an effective treatment. An answer on the related question Tilapia - Growth on neck suggests that all cancer surgery on fish will be unsuccessful.

I personally have seen a large carp (in a 5 gallon bucket of water) with a tumor visiting my exotics vet for surgery. I have another memory, of similar fish coming in for a check at another visit. At the time I assumed that it was the same fish, coming in for a post surgery check up. I don't really know what the out come was, I have just assumed everything was fine.

Update (some months later) Sharing the waiting room, with two large white and orange/red carp again. Owner verifies the carp is coming in for yet another cancer removal surgery, on a new tumor. As we know some ornamental fish can live long lives and it appears survive repeated surgery.

Looking for documented results of surgery success rates for growths on fish, cancerous, non-cancerous or undefined.

  • Actually, I didn't say all since thyroid cancers are distinctly treatable with iodine. Tumor surgery for fish is out there, though most don't opt for it, but what doesn't seem to be described is success in remission. – John Cavan Mar 26 '14 at 0:27
  • @JohnCavan, I would not define drug treatment (iodine) as a "surgery". This question is focused on surgery not drugs ;) – James Jenkins Mar 26 '14 at 10:56
  • Fair! Just want to be clear that I didn't think all were incurable. Still haven't found proof of success though, I suppose it's a bit of fringe activity for many given that few have emotional bonds with their fish. – John Cavan Mar 26 '14 at 14:24
  • I can't find anything right now (time) but look at zebrafish (danio rerio) and melanoma with the SETDB1 gene. There have been lots of studies and I'm sure some have involved surgical removal. That's scientific though, not hobbyist. – Raystafarian Mar 28 '14 at 10:21
  • The lifespan on fish is so short and the cost for surgery so high, I doubt there's going to be many, if any, documented cases of tumor removal on fish. – Jestep Apr 3 '14 at 23:46
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Of course, the surgery can be successful. If the tumour is not malignant and it is located in some easily operable place, for example on a fin, the surgery is easy and will be successful with a very high probability if done by a vet or even a skilled amateur. On the other hand, a malignant tumour already grown into some vitally important tissue may be inoperable. If any trace is left, it will grow again.

This is based on my 30-year experience of keeping and breeding tropical fish. If you want scientific articles, I bet there are many, but finding them might be a lot of work - here, for example, a koi healthy 15 months after a malignant tumour surgery: https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/f1de/fb2d1effea3e64506b0e65dd8d6b28349507.pdf

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    The answer does not really provided anything not in the question. Can you improve it by adding documented outcomes? – James Jenkins Mar 25 '18 at 23:34
  • What do you consider a "documented outcome"? This is based on my 30-year experience of keeping and breeding tropical fish. If you want scientific articles, I bet there are many, but finding them might be a lot of work - here, for example, a koi healthy 15 months after a malignant tumour surgery: pdfs.semanticscholar.org/f1de/… – Fish-in-Tea Mar 27 '18 at 20:59
  • for this sugery to be considered a sucsess i think the malignant growth must be gone for atleast two years like it is in humans. – trond hansen Apr 24 at 16:06

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