It sure has been a while. I have been suffering from blogging syndrome withdrawals. As you would have noticed, my blog site was being updated and I sure hope you like the new changes. I have also simultaneously been hammered at work.
What is important is that I am back now and I am buzzing with interesting and exquisite cases that I can’t wait to share with you…
The gorgeous cross puppy below is a rehomed RSPCA that I had to castrate on Monday. He is obviously quite zonked with my premedication in this photo.
I mean really, is it only Wednesday!?! It feels like friday or more importantly I can not wait until it is friday. It has been a very big week already.
I started monday with a big BANG. I had to operate on Travis, a 5-year-old golden retriever, that presented to us 4 days before for being blocked up. The poor fellow had a very distended bladder and was unable to urinate and was grunting when we admitted him as an emergency case. We proceeded with a light anaesthetic to allow us to pass a urinary catheter and also confirmed that he had bladder & urethral stones. Unfortunately he was too unwell to operate on the next day. We thus gave him aggressive supportive care over the weekend and he was scheduled for his big surgery on Monday.
You can read all the books in the world to mentally prepare yourself for a surgery but when it comes down to it, you are never fully prepared.
You just can never account for all that you are about to see until you are elbow deep in there! As soon as I opened Travis’s abdomen, I was greeted with lots of free abdominal fluid which I had not expected. It baffled me and got me worked up because it meant there was a possibility that Travis had a ruptured bladder or ureter. We obviously can attempt to repair torn bladders depending on their severity. However, when it gets into the finer things like ureter or urethral ruptures, that is beyond the scope of a mixed veterinarian. It became my mission to determine the source of all that fluid and in all honesty, I never got a concrete answer.
Travis had an intact bladder but it was very thickened & inflamed. I confirmed an intact urethra and did a cystotomy (cut into the bladder) and removed all the bladder stones & flushed the urethral stones too. It all went according to plan but the mystery of the abdominal fluid still haunts me. Thankfully, Travis has made an excellent recovery so far and is scheduled to go home tomorrow.
We can only hope that the mystery of the abdominal fluid will never creep up on us again…
Then yesterday, I had another massive surgery on a very special patient of mine. It was on Katie, a 10 year old JRT, that has been losing weight and not responding to our medical treatments over the past few months. We had done the full work up and come up with no answers and so we had to proceed with an exploratory laparotomy (abdominal investigation). This is like a surgical safari to try to determine a cause for her symptoms: liver/splenic tumour, foreign body obstruction, tumour or so forth.
We discovered a very inflamed & possibly obstructed loop of bowel and decided to resect the affected gut.
We sent the tissue away for histopathology. Katie is one tough cookie and made a good recovery. We were praying her results would not come back confirming tumour/cancer. Unfortunately she was diagnosed with lymphoma today. She is doing pretty well considering her challenging circumstances and we have decided to let her enjoy some serious pampering and good palliative care at home in her numbered days on this planet. It is very sad that we can not fix her but at least we now have some answers and are not grasping at straws of hope. This is a picture of us together the morning of her scheduled surgery!
Today, it did not feel like Wednesday because I have done almost a week’s worth of work already!
I was just running around catching up on my phone calls & looking after all my hospital cases, namely Travis, Katie and Echo. Echo is a 5-year-old female JRT that is my colleague’s case. The poor possum was run over 2 days ago and her injuries included a fractured femoral head + fibulae on the same leg. Her surgery was completed by my colleague today. She is recovering so well and is such a sweet and stoic pooch!
I am hoping for a more quiet rest of the week…
- Don’t ignore your male dog when he cocks his leg (rayyathevet.com)