Vet Blog

Tips, advice and talking points

Neuropathic pain

18 December 2019

As Veterinary Surgeons, we all have a duty of care to provide pain relief. So, when presented with an animal showing signs of pain, we probably all reach for NSAID’s and the opiates; meloxicam, carprofen, buprenorphine, butorphanol, morphine and fentanyl. But what happens when chronic neuropathic pain isn’t being controlled by any of the usual selection of drugs? The good news is that there are some very effective alternatives which can be used in combination with the original analgesics.

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Understanding lymph node cytology

18 December 2019

Cancer care in veterinary medicine is continually improving both in diagnostics and treatments, and as such is no longer considered a sentence of death. Indeed, most practices are used to treating all sorts of neoplastic conditions, with considerable success.

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Endotracheal and nasotracheal intubation

18 December 2019

If you’re working with rabbits, you’ll certainly have many occasions when you’ll want to be able to provide oxygen and gaseous anaesthetics. Years ago, the only options available to us were to fit a face mask over the animal’s nose and mouth, but this is stressful and there is a high risk that they’ll react by breath holding and may develop stress induced complications. It’s also difficult if not impossible to provide assisted ventilation in the event of respiratory arrest. The degree of control of anaesthesia is also poor with a mask, as you don’t have access to the airways and it’s difficult to monitor them accurately.

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Peri-anaesthetic complications in rabbits

18 December 2019

We are all aware of the risks associated with anaesthesia in rabbits. For years clinicians have been cautious when booking them in for surgery for fear of unexpected anaesthetic complications.  The problems can be compounded if the animal is already unwell, in poor health or needs to undergo a lengthy procedure. The problems are even worse when you consider that around 60% of mortalities occur post-anaesthesia.

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Trichobezoars – why do rabbits have a problem?

18 December 2019

It’s not uncommon to find hair in a rabbit's stomach and fortunately this don’t usually cause a problem. Unlike cats, they aren’t able to vomit or expel their stomach contents, so once hair has been swallowed, it has to come out the other end. However, if the hair moves into the small intestines at the same time as the animal is experiencing reduced gut movements, the mass of hair can start to dehydrate, eventually forming a partial or complete obstruction. The problem hairball is also known as a trichobezoar.

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Trichobezoars – diagnosing and managing the problem

18 December 2019

Hairballs (trichobezoars) can form in the stomach and intestines when hair is ingested and subsequently forms a dry obstructive mass. In most cases hair doesn’t cause a problem, but occasionally it can lead to some serious complications.

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