Biomedical Engineering ETDs

Publication Date

Spring 4-14-2022


Conjunctival hemangiomas and hemangiosarcomas are vascular tumors that affect the tissue in the eyes of canines. While relatively rare, these tumors can be costly to remove, and have a possibility of recurrence. Therefore, more understanding of the nature of these tumors and recurrence rates is of importance to the veterinary ophthalmologist. To date, there is limited data in the literature (2 retrospective studies) that examine the development, treatment, and recurrence of these vascular tumors; furthermore, the analyses do not examine the potential recurrence of tumors after treatment with therapies adjunctive to surgery (such as cryoablation, radiotherapy, and others). For this reason, additional information describing the characteristics and outcomes of patients diagnosed with these vascular neoplasms could help guide veterinary ophthalmologists to establish the best route of treatment for their patients. In this work, a retrospective analysis of canines treated at a specialty veterinary hospital in Albuquerque, New Mexico between 2011 to 2021 for conjunctival hemangiomas and hemangiosarcomas is presented. The recurrence rates between canines diagnosed histologically with conjunctival hemangioma versus hemangiosarcoma after surgical intervention with adjunctive cryotherapy were compared. In addition, analysis of the association between recurrence and location of the neoplasms and recurrence and completeness of surgical excision was done. It was found that there was no statistically significant association between: recurrence and diagnosis, recurrence and location, and recurrence and completeness of excision. Further study is needed to advocate for the role of adjunctive cryotherapy in lessening the chance of recurrence when incomplete or narrow surgical margins are obtained. However, from this study it is recommended that monitoring of both hemangiosarcomas and the more benign hemangiomas is warranted after surgical intervention, as there is no statistical evidence that diagnosis of one or the other favors or lessens the chance of recurrence.




ophthalmology, hemangioma, hemangiosarcoma, canine, ocular, veterinary

Document Type


Degree Name

Biomedical Engineering

Level of Degree


Department Name

Biomedical Engineering

First Committee Member (Chair)

Dr. Heather Canavan

Second Committee Member

Dr. Eva Chi

Third Committee Member

Dr. Nancy McLean

Fourth Committee Member

Dr. Stacy Peterson