Probably the most common surface/skin – soft tissue surgery, performed at our clinic is the removal of masses or ‘lumps’ on animals. Often these masses can be removed with a local freezing and a drop of a tranquilizer like valium,- without the need for a general anesthetic.
Masses or ‘lumps’ are removed and tested at a lab for identification of the disease process. Early removal and accurate diagnosis of a ‘lump’ is necessary to improve the outcome in your pet if the mass is cancerous. Lacerations are also common in pets and suturing will reduce the chance of infection, improve healing time and reduce scarring.
Common intra-abdominal masses would be liver biopsies (now by Laparoscopic biopsy) and splenectomies . These are now performed with the same Covidien Force Triad that we use in all our laparoscopic / keyhole surgeries. A normal splenectomy performed in other North/West Van vet clinics involves greater than 1 hour suturing of the splenic blood vessels. At Ambleside An. Hosp. we use the Covidien Ligassure function, to seal and divide the splenic blood vessels in 2 minutes or less. In compromised patients this reduced anesthetic time really matters.
Laparoscopy is also a less invasive alternative for a preventative gastropexy. This surgery is the only proven method for preventing Gastric Dilatation-Volvulus, or GDV, which is common in deep chested dogs such as Great Danes, German Shephards, Irish Setters, Bernese Mountain Dogs, Saint Bernards, Weimaraners, Boxers, Labrador and Golden Retrievers, to name a few.
This is a rapidly fatal condition where the stomach flips over on itself and strangulates blood flow to the stomach and heart. If not corrected quickly, your pet can die within a few hours. A preventative gastropexy anchors the stomach to the body wall which will prevent the torsion/twist.
Normally/traditionally this stomach tacking required a long incision of at least 8-12 inches. This large extra incision was often a barrier for male patients undergoing a neuter surgery, but with laparoscopic equipment, the SILs Port and a 2nd 5mm off-midline port, are all that is required
This is possible with Covidien uni-directional suture (V-Loc 180) and Endostitch needle drivers.
This is easily done at the time of spay or neuter without the large painful incision.