George had surgery


Staff member
Ok, it was minor surgery, but still! Last week I noticed these wart-like bumps in several places on George's (5yo male veiled) body. When we moved a month ago he did not have them. There was one spot that looked like small bump covered with a little retained shed that I noticed about 2 months ago. So I was keeping an eye on it to watch for changes or spread. These new bumps pooped up pretty quickly. They were fleshy and soft and non-painful when poked. Of course George hates anyone and anything so he made it hard to really examine them much more than that. So I took George to work with me, anesthetized him and took two of the bumps off and sent them in for analysis. My biggest concern is something potentially contagious since he's in the same room as the other chams, which are not affected at this time. Here's some pics of his little surgery!

The wart on his casque:

The crusty one on his side:

George getting anesthetized:

George totally out, on a warm IV bag (under the towel) to keep his body temp up while he's out The tape on his chest is keeping the Doppler monitor on while I'm working so I can hear his heart beating to make sure he's doing okay:

Removing the crusty one:

The hole on his casque:

Putting Silvadene on it until it heals since I couldn't close the gap. The hole from the crusty one on his side got one stitch to close it up.

Getting x-rays while he's under:

Pretty normal male veiled x-ray:

Look at the bent front leg bones:

I adopted George from a craigslist ad when he was just a year old. I knew he didn't have great care under his previous owner, and I now I see the proof:
Even after 4 years in my care that MBD bone damage is still there. MBD can be stopped, but it can't be reversed. I bet at one point the one on the right was probably broken. But now you can see every bone down in his toes, which means he has great calcium balance now!

While I had him under I was able to look him over really well. There are at least 5 more lesions that I didn't removed (didn't wanna make him swiss cheese) and one was full of pus. Still waiting on the pathology report of the warts I removed. George recovered from anesthesia beautifully and has since been back home eating and drinking well!
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New Member
What a wonderful resource for you to have access to! And I'm so glad we get to reap the benefits! Glad George has recovered from surgery, fingers crossed it's something straightforward.


Retired Moderator
That was so interesting to see. You could have had first place in the video contest. How wonderful to be able to care for your cham like that.


Staff member
Here is a video where you can hear George's heart beating under anesthesia! That wooshing noise is each beat of his heart - the first lower woosh is the atriums contracting, and the second louder woosh is the ventricle (reptiles only have 3 chambers to their heart instead of 4 like mammals!), and then repeat. Reptiles have slow heartbeats compared to mammals. That's how I monitored how he was doing under surgery. :)

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Chameleon Enthusiast
Wow Dayna thanks for sharing that! George is lucky he has a vet for a mommy!! I hope the growths you removed turn out to be benign or nothing contagious like you said. Look forward to a hopefully positive update!


Avid Member
This is such a neat thing to be able to do for your animals! I'm glad you shared and I hope everything comes back benign!

I hope some of the younger people on here take note of the fringe benefits of being a vet when they start looking into a career path.


Established Member
awwww poor guy i hope he recovers well and did you do all that yourself? are u like a vet or something?

ISA my Veiled

New Member
Wow awesome, thank you for sharing that with us, like Alec said I laughed when I saw him being put under lol cracks me up with that big honking mask on his face ha


Staff member
Glad everyone liked the pics! I cracked up at the pic of him getting anesthetized also - he's such a jerk normally so that expression is perfect for him! That was the tiniest mask we have and it still looks huge on him. Hopefully will get the report back on Monday to find out what those things are.

Chameleoman - yes I am a vet :)


New Member
Fantastic thread!

I sure hope George comes through with a clean, treatable bill of health. But, seeing how mom is a vet, I'm sure he'll get the best care possible.

Thanks for sharing this with us. Very informative.


Chameleon Enthusiast
Poor George. Thank you for sharing and I hope all will be good from his path report. Luie has been going through the same thing. Over the past few months Ivan has removed several lumps and bumps from him. If you don't mind I'd like you to look over Luie path report and I have a few pictures of some of his bumps too. Some of them look very similar to George's crusty bump. He has a problem with the last one healing. It seems to take chams a long time to heal.


Staff member
I'd love to see Luie's report! Especially if they look similar. Chams, and reptiles in general, do take a long time to heal. My iguana still has a noticeable bump from where her incision was closed after her spay, and that was 17 years ago. After that long you'd have a hard time finding any scar at all on a dog. Feel free to add Luie's story to the thread!


Chameleon Enthusiast
I'd love to see Luie's report! Especially if they look similar. Chams, and reptiles in general, do take a long time to heal. My iguana still has a noticeable bump from where her incision was closed after her spay, and that was 17 years ago. After that long you'd have a hard time finding any scar at all on a dog. Feel free to add Luie's story to the thread!
Thank you Dayna,

Here's Luie's results from the last bump Ivan removed and I post a few picture of his bumps shortly.


There was a sudden appearance of a hard growth on the cutaneous surface of the right side of the



Submitted is the mass. The nodule, which is supporting a section of overlying skin, is a discrete

expansile tumor comprised of streaming to sheets of pigment-bearing cells. These cells have

indistinct cytoplasmic borders and moderate amounts of a fine amphophilic slightly granular to

lacy cytoplasm. Some cells are supporting heavy amounts of slightly refractile golden-brown

pigments, which is obscuring the cytoplasm and the cell nuclei. The cell nuclei that can be

identified are oval with a homogeneous chromatin pattern and 1-2 small indistinct amphophilic

nucleoli. The mitotic index is extremely low at <1 per 10 per high-power fields. This has a thin

compression capsule of which is forming the deep and lateral borders of the tumor mass.




This particular mass appears benign; however, this may be deceiving in that many of the

chromatophoromas with a relatively benign appearance have had a malignant behavior and

metastasized widely. Systemic evaluation is recommended.

Chromatophoromas are common neoplasms of pigment-producing chromatophores in reptiles.

Tumors may arise from melanophores (melanin pigment producing cells), iridophores (cells with

birefringent intracytoplasmic particles that refract and reflect light), erythrophores (red/orange

pigment producing cells) and xanthophores (which produce yellow pigments). Although most of

these tumors involve only one type of pigment cell, multiple pigment cell types have been

involved in some cases. Rare cases have been described in lizards and these few reports do

describe metastasis.


ABVP, Certified in Avian Practice

Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Pathologists

Luie has had three bumps on his side like this one. First he got one on his left side, then one on his right side and then another one on his right side. This is a picture of his second one.

At the same time he had this one in his mouth.

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Staff member
Wow thanks for posting that path report! I find that really fascinating! I'll post my report when I get it too. I am really interested to see if we see the same thing!


New Member
They look so peaceful when they are out cold, don't they? Hope all is well with George and he heals nice and quickly for you :)


New Member
I'm really finding all this fascinating & comforting should my cham need a vet (I've heard of a local specialist but I have yet to see them, touch wood). It's nice to see the analysis as it is too, no simplification, even if that means research on my part! I'm adamant that my dwarf hamsters have kidney problems, but my vet says it's not practical to take bloods- but should anything happen to my cham, at least there is some hope of a diagnosis.
I was looking at iguanas today & it seems that they really become a part of the family & can be quite friendly- roaming around the house & settling in various basking spots set up for them. Is this an accurate depiction? I'm not thinking of getting one (my boyfriend would probably not like the idea), but I am intrigued.


Staff member
No, not an accurate depiction of most of them. My 18 year old ig has been in my care since she was tiny and handled everyday and she turned into a terror, just like most of the rest of igs do once they hit around 4 years of age. They have lots of weapons (teeth, tail, talons) and use them readily. The dog-like ones are very rare...and a reptile that just roams the house probably doesn't have the best maybe that contributes to a more docile personality...just sayin. ;)

I can break down the report if you have questions about particular parts.
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