Use of Vincristine Sulfate in the Treatment of Squamous Cell Carcinoma in a Horse's Lacrimal Gland


  • Tainã Kuwer Jacobsen Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Curitibanos, SC, Brazil.
  • Marcos Eduardo Neto Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Curitibanos, SC, Brazil.
  • Ângela Veiga Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Curitibanos, SC, Brazil.
  • Giuliano Moraes Figueiró Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Curitibanos, SC, Brazil.
  • Grasiela de Bastiani Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (UFSC), Curitibanos, SC, Brazil.



Background: Squamous cell carcinoma (SCC) is one of the most common cutaneous neoplasms found in equine breeding. The main cause is still unknown, based on predisposing factors such as excessive exposure to ultraviolet rays, advanced age, depigmented skin and viral or parasitic agents. There is currently a range of possibilities for the treatment of SCC. The choice of the ideal treatment changes according to the location, evolution and size of the tumor, economic costs and availability of material. The present case report aims to report the case of a Campeiro breed, diagnosed with SCC in the left lacrimal gland region and to evaluate the action of vincristine sulfate as intralesional chemotherapy. 

Case: A 30-year-old stallion of the Campeiro perlino coat it was attended in the sector of Clinic and Surgery of Large Animals, at the Federal University of Santa Catarina - Curitibanos campus. Physical examination revealed an alert and docile temperament, with no considerable physiological changes. In the evaluation of the left eye, it was observed a mass of 2x2 cm rosacea, with granular and ulcerated appearance, it was detected in the portion of the medial corner of the eye, and the lacrimal gland cannot be macroscopically delimited. Also it was detected a moderate mucopurulent secretion. The mass was collected through fine-needle aspiration (FNA) and puncture without aspiration of contents found in the third eyelid region for cytological analysis, and a malignant epithelial cell neoplasia associated with septic suppurative inflammation was observed, suggestive of SCC. After the laboratory results analyzed, 0.25 mL of intralesional vincristine sulfate (Vincizina®) with 20x06 needle was applied in the base of the tumor mass as treatment. After 24 days of the first and only application of the antineoplastic, treatment success was remarkable, with a macroscopic involution of the tumor area up to 80%. 

Discussion: The anatomical location of SCC covering the lacrimal gland, which is an important mechanism for ocular lubrication and cleaning, has prevented surgical excision from being instituted as an alternative treatment, due to subsequent complications such as corneal dryness and possible ulcer development. Therefore, intralesional chemotherapy became a safe and effective alternative to control and delay tumor mass, preserving the functions of the lacrimal gland. Vincristine is commonly used in veterinary medicine as an antineoplastic treatment of transmissible venereal tumors with inhibitory action on tumor cell division. Previous reports demonstrated success in the use of intravenous vincristine sulfate in the treatment of animals with benign and malignant sarcoids. In the present report satisfactory results were obtained, with only one application of intralesional vincristine sulfate, probably the continuity in the administration of the drug could have propitiated results with more effectiveness. By reason of the surgical excision, treatment of choice, not be feasible in this case, the use of a new form of treatment, less invasive and effective, aims to maintain the function of the affected organ and consequently in the welfare of animal. Every successfully treated animal should be monitored so that, in case of recurrence, it is re-treated as soon as possible.


Download data is not yet available.


Andrião N.A. 2009. Quimioterapia com sulfato de vincristina no tratamento do Tumor Venéreo Transmissível (TVT) de cadela: Relato de Caso. PUBVET. 3(16): Art. 567.

Assis-Brasil N.D., Marcolongo-Pereira C., Stigger A.L., Fiss L., Santos B.L., Coelho A.C.B., Sallis E.S.V., Fernandes C.G. & Schild A.L. 2015. Equine dermatopathies in southern Brazil: a study of 710 cases. Ciência Rural. 45(3): 519-524.

Bataier M.N., Alves R.M., Zanatta J.C., Boralli I.G., Mosquini A.F. & Montanha F.P. 2012. Carcinoma de células escamosas em prepúcio de equino - Relato de Caso. Revista Científica Eletrônica de Medicina Veterinária. (18): 1-5.

Burks B.S. 2012. Types of Cancer and Cancer Basics with Dr. Burks. Equine Cancer Society. [Fonte:<>].

Carvajal J.S., Bonilla A.F. & Barragán I.S.R. 2012. Squamous Cell Carcinoma with lung metastasis in a Colombian native Equine: a case report. Revista Ces Medicina Veterinaria y Zootecnia. 7(2): 56-63.

Chacur M.G.M., Fachini B.A., Yamasaki L., Basso K., Sanches O.C. & Pessoa V.M. 2014. Carcinoma das células escamosas no prepúcio com invasão vertebral em equino. Semina: Ciências Agrárias. 35(3): 1383-1388.

Cotovio M., Almeida O.C., Oliveira J.P., Pereira J.E., Paulo J.R. & Peña M.T. 2005. Tratamento cirúrgico e médico (5-fluorouracilo) de um carcinoma das células escamosas na membrana nictitante de um cavalo. Revista Portuguesa de Ciências Veterinárias. 1(100): 219-221.

Drazek M., Lew M., Lew S., Szarek J., Balicki I. & Della Salda L. 2015. Equine ocular squamous cell carcinoma: a case report. Veterinarni Medicina 7(60): 379-386.

Estell K. 2017. Periocular Neoplasia in the Horse. Elsevier. 33(3): 551-562.

Fortier L.A. & Mac Harg M.A. 1994. Topical use of 5-fluorouracil for treatment of squamous cell carcinoma of the external genitalia of horses: 11 cases (1988-1992). Journal Of The American Veterinary Medical Association. 8(205): 1183-1185.

Hendrix D.V.H. 2005. Equine Ocular Squamous Cell Carcinoma. Elsevier. 4(1): 87-94.

Hewes C.A. & Sullins K.E. 2009. Review of the Treatment of Equine Cutaneous Neoplasia: Surgery. American Association Of Equine Practitioners. 55(1): 386-392.

Hudson N.P.H., Dixon P.M., Pirie R.S. & Rhind S.M. 2000. Dysphagia caused by squamous cell carcinoma of the tongue. Equine Veterinary Education. 12(3): 133-136.

Jaglan V. 2015. Diagnostic and therapeutic studies of sarcoid tumours in equine. Veterinary Surgery and Radiology. [Fonte:<>].

Karnafik C., Rawlings M. & Dubielzig R.R. 2009. Corneal stromal invasive squamous cell carcinoma: a retrospective morphological description in 10 horses. Veterinary Ophthalmology. 12(1): 6-12.

King T.C. 1991. Therapeutic management of ocular squamous cell carcinoma in the horse: 43 cases (1979-1989). Equine Veterinary Journal. 23(6): 449-452.

Malalana F., Knottenbelt D. & Mckane S. 2010. Mitomycin C, with or without surgery, for the treatment of ocular squamous cell carcinoma in horses. Veterinary Record. 1(167): 373-376.

Marcolongo-Pereira C., Estima-Silva P., Soares M.P., Sallis E.S.V., Grecco F.B., Raffi M.B., Fernandes C.G. & Schild A.L. 2014. Doenças de equinos na região Sul do Rio Grande do Sul. Pesquisa Veterinária Brasileira. 34(3): 205-210.

Masferrer J.L., Leahy K.M., Koki A.T., Zweifel B.S., Settle S.L., Woerner B.M., Edwards D.A., Flickinger A.G., Moore R.J. & Seibert K. 2000. Antiangiogenic and Antitumor Activities of Cyclooxygenase-2 Inhibitors. American Association for Cancer Research. 1(60): 1306-1311.

Mcconnico R.S., Blas-Machado U., Cooper V.L. & Reiners S.R. 2001. Bilateral squamous cell carcinoma of the guttural pouches and the left middle ear in a horse. Equine Veterinary Education. 13(4): 175-178.

Monteiro S., Lemberger K. & Gangl M. 2009. Mandibular squamous cell carcinoma in a young horse. Equine Veterinary Education. 21(8): 406-410.

Moore A.S., Beam S.L., Rassnick K.M. & Provost P. 2003. Long-term control of mucocutaneous squamous cell carcinoma and metastases in a horse using piroxicam. Equine Veterinary Journal. 7(35): 715-718.

Morgan G. 1969. Ocular Tumours in Animals. Journal of Small Animal Practice. (10): 563-570.

Mosunic C.B., Moore P.A., Carmicheal K.P., Chandler M.J., Vidyashankar A., Zhao Y., Roberts R.E & Dietrich U.M. 2004. Effects of treatment with and without adjuvant radiation therapy on recurrence of ocular and adnexal squamous cell carcinoma in horses: 157 cases (1985-2002). Journal of The American Veterinary Medical Association. 11(225): 1733-1738.

Paterson S. 1997. Treatment of superficial ulcerative squamous cell carcinoma in three horses with topical 5-fluorouracil. Veterinary Record. 24(141): 626-628.

Payne R.J., Lean M.S. & Greet T.R.C. 2009. Third eyelid resection as a treatment for suspected squamous cell carcinoma in 24 horses. Veterinary Record. 1(165): 740-743.

Pigatto J.A.T., Albuquerque L., Hünning P.S., Almeida A.C.V.R, Nóbrega F. & Leal J.S. 2011. Squamous cell carcinoma in the third eyelid of a horse. Acta Scientiae Veterinariae. 39(1): 1-6.

Rabelo R.E., Vulcani V.A.S., Santos T.C., Lima C.R.O., Batista J.F., Costa M.M. & Miguel M.P. 2014. Carcinoma de células escamosas metastático em um equino. Acta Scientiae Veterinariae. 42(Suppl 1): 61.

Rahim Abadi P.D., Moslemi H., Naji Zadeh M.H., Golshahi H. & Golchin D. 2018. Squamous Cell Carcinoma in the Third Eyelid of Horse in Center of Iran. Journal of Veterinary Medicine And Research. 5(2): 1122-1122.

Silva S.C.G., Alves A.D.F., Rönnau M. & Torres M.B.A.M. 2015. Carcinoma de células escamosas em equino com metástase pulmonar: Relato de caso. Revista Brasileira de Higiene e Sanidade Animal. 9(4): 689-698.

Singh G.D., Kumar A., Gattani A., Tiwary R., Kumar A. & Kumar R. 2018. Surgical Management of Squamous Cell Carcinoma in Medial Canthus of Eye in Horse. International Journal of Current Microbiology And Applied Sciences. 7: 4359-4362.

Sousa J., Saito V., Nardi A.B., Rodaski S., Guérios S.D. & Bacila M. 2000. Características e incidência do tumor venéreo transmissível (TVT) em cães e eficiência da quimioterapia e outros tratamentos. Archives of Veterinary Science. (5): 41-48

Taylor S. & Haldorson G. 2013. A review of equine mucocutaneous squamous cell carcinoma. Equine Veterinary Education. 25(7): 374-37.



How to Cite

Jacobsen, T. K., Neto, M. E., Veiga, Ângela, Figueiró, G. M., & de Bastiani, G. (2019). Use of Vincristine Sulfate in the Treatment of Squamous Cell Carcinoma in a Horse’s Lacrimal Gland. Acta Scientiae Veterinariae, 47.

Most read articles by the same author(s)