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Unusual lump or dent

Discussion in 'Herp Health' started by BlackJack, Nov 9, 2004.

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  1. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    Hi everyone,
    Well here's another one for you... I'm hoping that some of you BRB owners can compare this with your snakes...
    Talyn has a lump or maybe it's a dent on her left side about one-third of the way down from her head. I have no idea if this is a perfectly natural formation in boas or not. Maybe that's just her liver or lung or what? Looking through some pics, it seems like she might have had it when I got her 2 months ago, but it seems much more noticeable now. Maybe just cuz I'm aware of it.
    Here are some pics; it's quite hard to photograph, but I've drawn in an arrow where it is. Feel free to laugh your tails off if this is something perfectly natural and found on every snake. :eek:

    Attached Files:

  2. venus

    venus Founding Member

    Wow, that is strange. I am at a loss here, but I am sure someone will have the answer.
  3. Inphormatika

    Inphormatika Elite Member

    Perhaps a broken rib from mistreatment prior to you buying her?
  4. Rakoladycz

    Rakoladycz Elite Member

    I'm not sure what it is but i have seen it in 2 wild snakes that are around here(black racer and a garter) so i dont think it is Boa specific
  5. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    Snake anatomy pic

    Thanks for the responses.
    Here's a link to a good diagram of the snake's internal organs;
    The lump is rather hard (but it could just be her Schwarzenegger muscles!) and it seems to be around the area of the liver. ???
    I suppose she could have broken a rib at some point... I don't know a lot about her history before I got her... I got her from a reputable reptile store, but I don't know when/where they got her. She was born in Switzerland, though, so she's not W/C.
    It doesn't seem to bother her if I touch it, she eats like a pig and her digestion is good. She's much more docile now than she was when I first got her, so I'm not really worried (yet), just finally got around to taking pics so I could ask you all!!
  6. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Judging from the picture it looks to me as though either the ribs have been damaged at some time or else it is a birth defect. It doesn't look like it belongs there. The only way to tell for sure would be to have an X ray done.
  7. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    Yeah, I would have to go with Merlin on this one.. it isn't a normal appearance, however it's not something I can comment on properly I'm afraid as I've never noticed anything like this on our snakes. As Merlin suggested, an x-ray should determine it, though if it doesn't appear to be showing her any distress it is optional as to whether a vet visit should occur.

    To err on caution though, just because something doesn't seem to be causing obvious pain to a snake doesn't mean it isn't ofcourse.

    I can see the dent in the pictures, but you also describe a lump - what exactly does it feel and look like? Is it a lump in the dent? Is it always there or is it more apparent when she moves?

    I'm a little perplexed by this, although it could be something simple like you suggested, or it could be a birth defect or from a previous injury - Donna, aka.Steel Rip has a corn snake who has a couple of lumps, which we are pretty certain are due to birth defects or something that occurred due to factors during the mother's pregnancy.. I will try and research a little more about this to try and discover what it is..

  8. steel rip

    steel rip Elite Member

    Hey Rach, I have two corns with lumps and bumps, remember, you knicknamed em, lumpy and bumpy lol :D
  9. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    LOL :D You certainly do!! :p

    Hey, could you maybe post some pics of them, particularly of Kane? Perhaps we can compare with Andrea's BRB and see if they are similar? :)
  10. steel rip

    steel rip Elite Member

    Kane has a few bumps which makes a few dents, I will get some pics up for ya, as soon as I can :p
  11. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    See this link for descriptions of strange lumps and bumps Andrea.. don't know if this is a description of what Talyn has, but may be of some use???

    On the wrong thread, but there are also some bits of advice about mites, however some of the info is a little outdated, where strips are advised as a treatment,, these should no longer been used as recent research has discovered they are very harmful to reptiles.

    care info for snakes

    I don't think this sounds like what you are experiencing?? It looks more like a dent to me, but I don't know what you are feeling?

    Also, bear in mind normal activity etc for the snake - good feeding and high levels of activity, a nice temperament etc, are all good signs that the snake is healthy and well. :)
  12. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    More like a dent

    Thanks everyone
    I think it looks more like a dent (like a rib or something is missing there), when she breathes, it fills up almost to the level of the rest of her body and then goes in again. Just to the front of the dent (towards her head) the muscle seems hard. Martin thinks it's a lump, but I think it just looks more pronounced because of the dent.
    Since I'm taking little Monty to the vet on Monday, I'll print out these photos and take them with me. Then I can make an appointment for Talyn if the vet thinks it should be looked at.
    I'll keep you informed on both fronts!
  13. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    Good luck with the vet visit Andrea,. I'm sure both snakes will be fine, and in a couple of months all this cause for concern will seem a distant memory!

  14. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    The fact that the dent fills up and then returns seems to support the idea of a missing rib section. The lung inflating has nothing but skin to contain it so it fills up the dent
    The lump in front of the dent seems to support this idea as well. It may be the missing rib section that has fused in the wrong spot.
  15. steel rip

    steel rip Elite Member

    heres a few pics of kanes lumps, bumps and dents, they go right down to the tip of his tail the bumps.


  16. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member


    Wow, thanks for posting those pics, Donna! Did you ever find out what they are?
    Maybe I'm just a worry-wort... something like that would have me really concerned! Looks like a beautiful snake, though!

    Talyn's just got the one dent... I guess I just really like to know so I can shut off my worry button. In Switzerland a 4 year old BRB costs a small fortune... I don't even dare post here what I paid for her! (I've seen snake prices in the US) So the price of a few X-rays might be worth it just to find out what it is.

    I'll let you know if I find out.
  17. Bitis Gabonica

    Bitis Gabonica Elite Member

    Joe and I have had a look at Kane, and we are certain that the lumps and dents he has are birth defects. I agree with Merlin, Talyn's does sound like a missing rib or something alike.

    How much did you pay for her??? I'm intrigued now! :D
  18. steel rip

    steel rip Elite Member

    I hope all goes well at the vets for you, I haven't found out what kanes lumps and bump are, they dont seem to cause him any discomfort, when I got him I was told to only feed him fuzzies, but hes doing great on mice, he would never grow on fuzzies, Bitis and I think its a birth defect, I dont think its an injury there are to many bumps for an injury, he is very active and alert. if I thought they where a cause for concern or I seen them causing him distress, then I wouldn't hesitate to take him to the vets, but he is seems fine :)
  19. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    Twist my arm

    OK, OK, I'll tell!!! ;) : I paid CHF 750.00 which corresponds to US$ 640.00 or GB£ 345.10

    When I was in California in September, I went to a reptile store and nearly gave the owner a heart-attack when I told him how much I'd paid for my girl.

    Monty was "only" CHF 190.00 -- US$ 162 or GB£ 87.43
  20. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    Mystery solved

    Your hypothesis was right, Merlin! At the necropsy we were finally able to check out this unusual area. Talyn had a whole section of ribs missing on that side. The vet said they probably never formed there. Just a freak birth-defect.
    Just thought I'd go back and let you know.
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