Non-invasive point-of-care monitors in ER/ICU and anesthesia

In this post, Stephen Cital discusses the Radical-7 Pulse CO-Oximeter by Masimo Corp., the only FDA-approved non-invasive CO2-oximeter marketed for veterinary use.

Tooth resorption in dogs and cats

Tooth resorption is the progressive destruction of the calcified substance of permanent teeth by clastic cells. It can be extremely painful and is one of the most common oral diseases seen in cats. It is also frequently found in dogs.

Dentistry beyond dental cleaning

There's much more to dentistry than routine cleaning. Check out this post describing commonly-encountered tooth disorders.

Water, water everywhere: Fluid choices in the hospitalized patient

Fluid therapy is a crucial part of the treatment of patients in the emergency room and the critical care unit. Though it has great ability to help our patients, like any medical intervention, it has the potential to do harm as well. Having a greater understanding of the fluid balance within the body, the effect of different disease states on this fluid balance, and the fluid choices available for treating our patients is vital to maximizing patient benefit, while minimizing side effects of therapy.

Synthetic colloids: A friend or foe?

Synthetic colloids are a combination of water, electrolytes and large molecular weight molecules that contribute to the oncotic force (colloid osmotic pressure, COP) of the intravascular space. This post covers the pros and cons of their use.

Stroke / infarct

Cerebrovascular accidents ("stroke") were once thought to be uncommon to rare in veterinary medicine, but the increasing availability of advanced imaging shows that not to be the case. This post reviews possible causes, diagnosis, and treatment of strokes in dogs and cats.

Limiting dependence on transfusion for the critically-ill patient

This post reviews the pillars of patient blood management, including maximizing red cell mass, optimizing hemostasis, and techniques to recover active hemorrhage.

Corneal ulceration in dogs and cats: Diagnosis and treatment

Corneal ulceration is one of the most common ophthalmic problems seen in our canine and feline patients. This post covers the causes and diagnosis of corneal ulceration in dogs and cat, as well as medical and surgical treatment.

The incidentally discovered adrenal mass

With improved imaging techniques, the number of adrenal masses detected in animals with problems unrelated to adrenal function is common.

The latest on steroids and spinal cord injury

One of the most common causes of spinal cord injury in dogs is intervertebral disc herniation (IVDH). This post updates the use of methylprednisolone and PEG in the treatment of spinal cord injury.

Making the most of your ultrasound machine

This post describes how to manipulate user controls to obtain better ultrasound images in veterinary medicine.

Update on acid suppressant therapy

This post describes the use and pros/cons of H2 receptor antagonists and proton pump inhibitors.

Feline head imaging: Continuity with practitioner and radiology

Diseases of the head are often initially imaged with radiographs in the clinic. This article discusses the basics of feline head radiographic imaging.

Minimally invasive surgery - How small can we go?

With advances in human and veterinary medicine, new and innovative surgical techniques are constantly being devised, tested, and either discarded or adopted as the new standard.

Canine cognitive dysfunction

With advances in veterinary medicine, we are more and more commonly seeing our pets living to a greater age than has been reported historically. Current estimates in the companion animal population indicate that there are more than 50 million senior and geriatric dogs over the age of 7 years. As such, advanced age in our pets and their associated illnesses have become a very important aspect in who and what we treat in our roles as general practitioners and specialists, alike.

The clot thickens: Thromboembolic disease in dogs and cats

Nicole Barrella, DVM Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital,…

From Stage 0 to 3: Injectable Induction Agents – New and Old

General anesthesia provides us with unconciousness, amnesia, analgesia, muscle relaxation, and the ability to perform various procedures in our veterinary patients. The use of injectable anesthetic agents allows us to get our patients from premeded-awake to surgical plane of anesthesia, while minimizing the use of inhalant anesthesia and its associated cardiovascular and respiratory depression. This article discusses the more common induction single and combo agents.

My dog hasn’t pooped since discharge! (5 min ago)

Studies in human medicine over the past 30-40 years have shown consistent poor recall of medical information, with between 40-80% of all medical information being immediately forgotten. In fact, 48% of information that is “remembered” is either imagined or misconstrued. This article provides an overview of medical information recall studies.

Old school and new school in airway management

Stephen Cital RVT, SRA, RLAT United Veterinary Specialty and…

Radiography vs. ultrasound in the dog with acute abdominal signs

In the emergency setting, the primary goal of diagnostic imaging is to help differentiate surgical from non-surgical conditions. The benefits and limitations of survey radiography and abdominal ultrasound are discussed in this post.

Blood, sweat and tears: Approach to the canine hemoabdomen

Hemoabdomen is the presence of free blood in the peritoneal cavity and is a frequent emergency in small animal medicine for dogs and cats. This article discusses nontraumatic and traumatic hemoabdomen.

Wakin' up is hard to do

The risk for anesthesia-related complications or death does not end when the vaporizer dial is turned off. In fact, it can be argued that the greatest risk occurs during the recovery period. Equal vigilance is required during anesthetic recovery.

Medical evaluation of congenital hepatic disease in dogs

The two most common types of congenital hepatic disease include portosystemic vascular anomalies (PSVA) and microvascular dysplasia (MVD, now technically termed portal vein hypoplasia without a macroscopic anomaly). The clinical course and treatment options differ depending on the underlying disease, and an accurate diagnosis is essential for future management and prognosis.

Dental radiography: A fresh look

Intraoral radiology is an essential tool in the diagnosis and treatment of dental problems. It is perhaps the tool that separates mere “cleaning and pulling” from more comprehensive veterinary dentistry.

Intestinal leak testing following enterotomy

An important task during enterotomy surgery is testing for leaks following intestinal closure. The instructional video below demonstrates intestinal leak testing with and without instruments.

Laryngeal paralysis: The inspiration and the aspiration

Laryngeal paralysis is one of the more common upper respiratory emergencies seen in our aging canine population. It is frequently diagnosed in the spring to summer time as the weather begins to warm and we are more active with our canine companions.

The yellow fellow: Evaluation of the icteric cat

Icterus is the presence of yellow discoloration of non-pigmented body surfaces (i.e. mucous membranes, sclera, skin) or plasma, and this results from an accumulation of bilirubin in the blood stream.

Canine lymphoma

Lymphoma is one of the most commonly encountered canine cancers, and it is seen frequently in clinical practice. Lymphoma arises from neoplastic lymphocytes. Typically it is first recognized in lymphoid organs (lymph nodes, liver, spleen, bone marrow); however, it can be seen in any location in the body.

Rattlesnake bites

Summer is at full steam, birds are chirping, stir crazy dog-owners and their trusty companions are hitting the trail and basking in the glorious Colorado sun; however, they have company out there on those rocky foothills trails.

The shocking truth about non-cardiogenic pulmonary edema

Non-cardiogenic pulmonary edema (NCPE) is defined as a pathologic accumulation of fluid within the lungs of a patient without primary cardiac disease. It results from an increase in permeability at the alveolar-capillary bed coupled with an increased hydrostatic pressure in the vasculature surrounding the lungs.

Pointers for the neurological examination of “back dogs”

It is common for dogs to be presented to their veterinarian for being “down” in the hind end, but it's not always a spinal cord disorder. This post provides some tips for differentiating patients with spinal cord disease from other disorders, including non-neurological disease.

"My dog is geriatric, so I shouldn't anesthetize him." Fact or fiction?

The short answer is fiction, “age itself is not a disease.” Many times I have heard, “why are we anesthetizing this 17-year-old dog?”, only to have them do amazing under anesthesia and be better than before.

Tips for digital & teleradiology

With more and more veterinary practices transitioning to digital radiography, teleradiology consultations are on the rise. Ease of digital image transmission/submission, and quick turn-around times have greatly facilitated this trend in veterinary medicine. This article provides some tricks and tips that will help you get the most out of your teleradiology interpretations with fewer calls, emails, and repeat radiographs to follow up your interpretations.

Pemphigus foliaceus

Pemphigus foliaceus (PF) is one of the most common autoimmune skin diseases in the dog and cat. This article discusses diagnosis and treatment of this condition.

Pain management in exotic species

In the past, pain management among all veterinary species was overlooked or thought unnecessary. It was thought that the presence of pain and associated sedentary behavior would deter the patient from paying attention to the surgical site. Or, even worse, that some species do not feel pain. We now know that this is a myth. This article discusses basic analgesia in exotic animal species.

Exotic animal fluid therapy

As exotic animals become increasingly popular, owners expect increasingly advanced treatment options for their unique pet. This article provide a brief overview of fluid therapy in exotics.

What’s your radiographic diagnosis? Lame Maine Coon

What is your radiographic diagnosis for this 2-year-old castrated male Maine Coon cat that was presented to the emergency department for evaluation following an acute onset of left hind limb lameness after being spooked and running away from a vacuum cleaner?

Seizure & anticonvulsant FAQ

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Management of seizures is an art. There is no “correct way” to treat seizures, and neurologists frequently have differences of opinion regarding anticonvulsants. The goals of this article are to answer many of the frequently asked questions about seizure treatment in dogs and cats and to provide information regarding the more commonly used anticonvulsants.

Taking indirect blood pressures

Appropriate systemic arterial blood pressure is vital for survival in any species. In practice, we are faced with many reasons and conditions to obtain and interpret a patient’s blood pressure, such as anesthesia, cardiovascular disease and kidney disease. This post provides tips to ensure accurate BP measurement.

Practical ophthalmic drug use

Ophthalmic drugs can be confusing, (and difficult to spell!), in terms of their use and when to use which one. The goal of this article is to make practical recommendations for a selection of ophthalmic drugs used for common conditions.

Thoracic CT: More than just a pretty picture

Computed tomography (CT) is routinely used in human medicine to examine pulmonary, tracheobronchial and mediastinal abnormalities, and is the standard screening test for pulmonary metastasis. CT is more sensitive and accurate than radiography for detecting interstitial disease and pulmonary nodules even in the presence of pleural effusion. This article discusses thoracic CT in veterinary patients.

Red blood cell transfusions

Small animal veterinary blood products have become much more accessible over the past decade. Check out this article on red blood cell transfusions.

Vomiting and anti-emetic therapy in veterinary medicine

Vomiting causes alarm and concern across species and is a common presenting complaint in our small animal patients. Read more about the pathophysiology and treatment of vomiting.

Canine hypoadrenocorticism: An overview of what we know and have learned

Hypoadrenocorticism is a life-threatening disease and is a result of failure of the adrenal glands to produce adequate hormones. Click on post title to read more about this potentially life-threatening, but manageable disorder.

What's your radiographic diagnosis? Respiratory arrest during dental cleaning

Jennifer O. Brisson, DVM, DACVR Massachusetts Veterinary Referral…

Gastroprotectant and antacid therapy in veterinary medicine

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Gastroprotectant and antacid therapies are commonly employed in veterinary medicine when we wish to prevent gastric ulceration or suspect gastric ulceration may be the cause of clinical signs in our canine and feline patients. Click post title to read more about GI protectant mechanisms and treatment of GI ulceration.

Diagnosis and treatment of keratoconjunctivitis sicca

Keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS; “dry eye”) is one of the most common ophthalmic diseases affecting pet dogs. Despite its prevalence, it is underdiagnosed and therefore often not treated. My goal in writing this article is to encourage veterinarians to perform a Schirmer tear test regularly as part of a complete ophthalmic examination. Once a diagnosis of dry eye is established, treatment can be tailored to the individual patient’s needs.

Calcium oxalate urolithiasis

Urolithiasis refers to the formation of stones anywhere within the upper and lower urinary tracts. It is a common problem among both canine and feline patients in veterinary medicine and one of the most common causes of lower urinary tract signs.

Exotic animal blood transfusions: An overview

Blood transfusions are an ever-growing therapy in small animal practice. Transfusions offer patients a lifesaving option by giving us time to treat the underlying disease or correct hemodynamic imbalances. However, did you know you could use most of the same methods used in cats and dog blood transfusions in other species?

Minimally invasive treatment options: The use of stents in the veterinary patient

The use of stents in the veterinary patient is constantly expanding. Requests from owners for minimally invasive treatment options and palliative care options are steadily increasing. This article discusses some of the more common stents used in veterinary medicine.