“Work seems like play to me. I can’t believe I actually get paid to do it.” Meet Dr Brian Beale

Dr. Brian Beale is an extraordinary man with many talents.  His supernatural ability in the veterinary world is so impressive that he’s not only a surgeon, a mentor, an educator and a radio talk show host, but also a TV celebrity!

Here are the best bits from our exclusive interview with Dr Beale…

Brian knew from a young age that veterinary medicine was the path for him.  He was exposed to responsible animal ownership by his grandparents. They inspired him with their practice of driving a fair distance to take their slobbery Mastiffs and St. Bernards to the specialists at the University of Pennsylvania to receive the best care possible. Brian recognised then that specialists were rare and getting proper care was important.

When it came time for university he knew he was a very hands-on type of person and liked to fix stuff.  Brian originally went into engineering then made the switch to the vet program at the University of Florida graduating as a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in 1985. “I had a strong academic background in problem solving, solution and diagnostics and decided I wanted to be the best orthopaedic surgeon I could be”.  Since then he has never looked back!

After completing his internship and residency and working for the University, Dr Beale joined the Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists and has been there for over 20 years!  When asked what makes a good workplace, Brian says “For me, it’s being able to have the equipment and team available to do the best job you possibly can”.  Additionally, Dr Beale stated that he wanted to influence the direction of the practice, and not have it totally clinical.  He has certainly achieved this.  Along with clinical practice, he is now incredibly active in education, research and training and he believes that finding a good mentor after graduating is very important.

Lucky for VetPrac, Dr Beale LOVES teaching!  He teaches all levels, pre-vets to residents, but much of his knowledge is shared with vets just wanting to learn more. He made remarkable contributions to the growth of veterinary medicine in 1999 when he worked closely with human orthopods to develop arthroscopy in small animals. One of the human surgeons in the team scrubbed in on his own dog to help Brian repair a torn cruciate ligament. Needless to say, the surgeon had to let Dr Beale take over and was amazed by the procedure. Another case Dr Beale shared with us was a 300-pound Malayan tiger from the Houston Zoo. “I diagnosed elbow dysplasia and fragmented medial coronoid process. The arthroscopic findings were amazingly similar to what I see in dogs…except the FCP was as big as my thumb. It presented quite a challenge to remove it arthroscopically”.  What an incredible opportunity!  He is also co-author of “Small Animal Arthroscopy”.

National Geographic WILD teamed up with the vets at the Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialist and created a show called “Animal ER”.  Brian reveals some of the highlights of the show were “getting the opportunity to work with a highly experienced Hollywood crew with a high level of expertise and working with many incredible species of animals including tigers, chimpanzees, penguins, endangered bird species and monkeys to name a few”.

If you’d like to learn from Dr Brian Beale come join VetPrac for the Hip and Hindlimb surgery workshop June 26th – 27th. Register TODAY! For more information click here to check out the brochure.

Dr. Tania…Someone you can “Bank” on!

What makes you win the award for the best lecturer for 4th-year students at the University of Queensland?… A splash of surgery, mixed with a pinch of oncology, stir in more than a dozen published papers and ta-da!… you get Dr Tania Banks.

Dr Banks knew from a young age (14 years old to be exact) that she wanted to be a veterinarian. After graduating from vet school at the University of Queensland, she worked in general practice for a short period of time before taking on a surgical residency at the University of Queensland and Veterinary Specialist Services (VSS). She then made the big move to the UK to practise as a specialist surgeon. While she was in England for several years, she missed the blue skies and the Aussie flora and fauna which lucky for us, brought her back to the motherland. Since returning, she has gained Fellowship of Australian & New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists in Small Animal Surgery in 2005. Also, she is back to where it all started and is now the senior lecturer for Small Animal Surgery at the University of Queensland.

Although she wishes that she could have more arms (and hands) to make surgery easier, even with the two that she’s got, she works magic both surgically and academically. She has a knack for engaging students by sharing her clinical cases, encouraging them to give her a hand in surgery (pun intended), getting the students to speak with owners and reading up on other hospital cases. Dr Banks mostly loves doing surgery because she likes to fix things!  Tania states “I think everyone has their inner strengths and weaknesses and working in a team that makes the most of what everyone can bring to the table is inspiring. I don’t get surprised when people don’t like surgery- I am more interested in what they do like”.

For those who wish to further a career in surgery, Tania recommends you find a good mentor and work hard.  Dr Banks also sets a great example for her favourite quote, “Don’t tell me, show me”. Tania says “words don’t talk about what you are going to do, just do it”.  Spoken like a true leader. And “do it” she has done! Soon Dr Banks will be moving to Wagga Wagga. Tania states “there will be an interesting mix of soft tissue and orthopaedic cases- apparently there are lots of fractures and wound to treat which is exciting.  I think it will be a new adventure for me. I can walk to the gym and I can ride my bike to work! This will be a great change”.

Dr Banks recently co-authored a textbook “Small Animal Oncology: An Introduction” and hopefully this helps clear up some common misconceptions about surgical oncology. For example, surgery often IS a reasonable option in many situations. This is amazing! Books are still very important as they are the brick of knowledge in time, from which all other knowledge is built around. We can’t wait to read it!

One of the memorable cases Dr Banks would like to leave us with is about a little dog who recently was hit by a car.  She suffered a very displaced spinal fracture and luxation at L6-7. The little pup could move and feel her legs pre-op despite the gross displacement of her vertebrae. This dog was lucky to have Dr Banks on the case. She is now walking and doing very well post-op.

Great work Dr Banks! We couldn’t be more thankful for having you share your story with us!

If you would like to hear more from Dr Banks (she has lots of cases to share) come learn from her in person!  Join us in November at the Internal Fixation workshop.

Interviewed by Alena Felkai

What drives Dr. Preston’s drill?…

Dr. Chris Preston (BVSc (hons), MACVSc, FACVSc, DACVS) is the owner and director of Pet Emergency & Specialist Centre in Victoria (www.petemergency.com.au) and has been a specialist surgeon in private practice for over 20 years. In addition, he is a fellow of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists and has numerous orthopaedic publications internationally which include topics on TPLO surgery, arthroscopy and hip replacements.

VetPrac got the chance to have a quick chat with Chris on the phone to find out what puts the spring in his step and the drive behind his drill.

Initially Dr. Preston thought he was going to be a horse surgeon when he started vet school.  Lucky for us that that didn’t happen!  What changed? Well, let’s just say that he wanted a different kind of challenge.  Chris said, “Being faced with the complexity of the skill set surgeons have in the small animal world, I wanted to get technically better at operating”.  Now looking back at his decision to change, he is happy with his choice.  Small animal surgery “constantly gets complicated and surgeons are always coming up with new procedures for hips, knees and elbows”.  Since scrubbing up as a surgical specialist, Chris too has contributed to this!

One of the newer procedures he’s talking about is knee replacements!  Although they are very common in the human world of medicine, they are pretty new to the animal kingdom. In saying that, Chris really enjoys them and so far he’s performed around 50 or more. One case that Dr. Preston was delighted to share with VetPrac involved a dog from Broom.  “His knees were so crippled that his gait was completely compromised” Chris states. The dog and his owner flew down to Melbourne specifically to seek out Dr. Preston’s expertise and two knee replacements later, the dog (and his owner) are strutting their stuff back at home…I guess you could say he put a spring in the dogs step as well.

This brings us to the next question…how does a specialist learn new procedures?  He learns from specialists of course!  In order to keep up to date, Dr. Preston personally trains alongside the inventor of the procedure so then he can then implement it into his own practice.  Chris states “I try and learn one new surgery a year”.

Dr. Preston has quite the busy schedule.  In the morning he consults, at lunch time he starts operating on a variety of cases, at about 5 p.m. he’s writing up records and usually is home for dinner!  He also somehow finds the time to oversee 6 veterinary students and those undergoing a residency program at his clinic, all of which are participating in clinical research studies and publishing articles with his help and guidance.  We can’t really understand where he finds the time to do so much, but he does, and he is good at it!  Chris states that he enjoys “the diversity of people and the absence of monetary discussion when teaching”.  To top it off he will be joining the VetPrac crew this June for the upcoming Soft tissue surgery of the Forelimb Joint Surgery Workshop!

Thank you for sharing a bit about yourself, Dr. Chris Preston…VetPrac couldn’t be happier to have you as part of the team.

Interviewed by Alena Felkai

Life in the fast lane

Sometimes life feels like I’m standing in front of one of those tennis ball dispensers without a racket. Am I the only one?
 
I woke up at 2 a.m. as usual to the unusual sound of silence in our home. The baby didn’t wake up, for the first time in months, for her usual middle of the night feed. I was ecstatic! But having been conditioned so well I was now stuck with nothing to do. And without the biological drain and hormonal influences on my sleep patterns which come after a baby feed – I was wired. And my brain was ticking.

Tossing and turning, my mind didn’t want to rest. And I was too physically tired from my previous day to want to actually do anything even as strenuous as read. So, I reached for my phone to mess about and thought to look up buying iPhone chargers (because I always misplace them) – and my device went dead…

I’m hoping some of you can relate. Or else my life is unique and everyone else has it together every day?

Annoyed – I made myself get up and do some work, it being 3 a.m. now and the perfect time to achieve everything. But sitting in front of the computer I was angry that I was the only person on the planet awake at this forsaken hour and started to rebel by looking at my desk and thinking how messy it was. I convinced myself I needed to write a list about everything in my life that needed to change right then and there. But my eyes were squinty in the light because they wanted to be closed… I was clearly in a rut, I couldn’t get out of. I got mad at myself. 

So I said “Self! Self – we simply cannot have this! We have to work together. My mind is awake, but my body asleep. What are we going to do about it?” And because I couldn’t find an answer, I pulled up a cushion. Sat on it with my legs crossed and waited for the answer to come. I told myself, “Self, we simply aren’t doing anything else until we have a plan”.

“This is great I thought! NOT! I wanted to sleep but my mind is racing. I want to use my mind to wear it out, but my body doesn’t want to work. HMPH… Each is rebelling against the other and nothings getting accomplished. Not even sleep! I sat and I sat and I sat…and then it happened… I found myself “sitting in the moment.” 

By sitting still – I was actually giving my mind something to focus on, because I wasn’t letting myself slouch or lie down, I was thinking about my posture and breathing. But by sitting still I was not active. I knew how to sit –  I sat all the time – often while watching TV – telling myself I am resting.
 
People talk about this “being in the moment thing” like it’s fun, good, pleasant. It’s not, you know? Not at first…It’s more like sitting next to a frustrated baby who doesn’t know whether to play with a toy or cry because she doesn’t know what to do with it. It’s quite confronting. It’s quite unsettling. And it’s quite scary. Because you never really know what to do – because the baby can’t communicate its needs. All you can do (and all you’re supposed to do according to the experts), is sit there – and not DO but BE. Be empathetic. Be there. And for someone who likes to DO, it’s the most aggravating thing on the planet. EVER.
 
Slowly my stream of consciousness slowed and my body relaxed. As I sat there, in the moment… just being… Slowly, the world and everything in it seemed softer, clearer, simpler… and I thought maybe I could lie down a little? Interestingly – it had been less than 10 minutes.

Of course, then I had the idea that I had to tell everyone about this discovery and got up to type this out so you too could benefit from my enlightenment because I’m a Doer… You know what they say? -“You can’t change acrow into an echidna or a lion into a dove.” So hopefully, maybe next time, I will head back to sleep… maybe 🙂


How High Achievers Succeed and Keep Succeeding is a six-week online workshop for professionals and para-professionals in the veterinary industry who want to change something in their life that is making them feel malaligned with their own sense of well-being. It could be work or personally related. It’s up to you. The workshop has been run with VetPrac repeatedly over the last year, led by Dr Cathy Warburton who is coming rapidly into wide acclaim for her work in positive change methods for our community. 

Participating will help you to identify your strengths, and recognise your achievements as well as demonstrating coping strategies when times are tough. Topics such as neuroplasticity, self-care, how to engage better are approached from an evidence-based science perspective, challenging what you think and giving you excellent foundations to build better relationships and define your goals for your life. 

Workshops have very few participants and require each person to take a journey of discovery and positive change in their life.  If you are interested please contact us or see the How High Achievers Succeed course brochure for more information.

A is for Accounting, B is for Business…P is for Dr. Paolo Lencioni.

Meet Dr. Paolo Lencioni. After graduating veterinary school in South Africa, Dr. Lencioni worked as a veterinary surgeon in the UK before opening his own clinic. Whilst working as a vet, he was able to obtain a Diploma in Computer Applications Programming and a Masters in Professional Accounting. Since then he has worked as an accounting software consultant, founded ‘VillageBee’ which produced BeeFree, a veterinary practice management system, and created ‘SmartVetApp’. To add to the list, Dr. Lencioni is a partner at APL Accountants, an accounting firm that exclusively deals with veterinarians, and a proud Member of the Association of Taxation and Management Accountants.

Dr. Lencioni certainly proves that one path can lead us to many different places. Read on to learn some tips and tricks for a successful career.

Wow. You have done a lot in your time. What prompted the switch from being a Veterinarian to Accounting?

I needed to know more about business processes, this was not taught properly at vet school!

What are 3 top things to consider when buying a practice?
1. Position / location
2. Active client base
3. Profitability

Where do practices loose most of the money?

Improper team / staff management and expectation setting.

Tell us more about the SmartVetApp and Profit Diagnostix.

It is an automated and efficient system to help you manage your team, your business and to perform health checks on your business performance. It automatically benchmarks your business processes against national averages and top performers.

What have you learned from experience that you didn’t learn from a textbook? What practical advice would you offer fellow vets?

You can’t learn anything without experiencing it, but first you must know, read, listen, and hear about it. So it’s a process – learn first, then be brave and implement / experience / apply your knowledge.

How can practice owners learn more about running a business? 

Subscribe to some online courses, they don’t have to be business degrees, there is so much out there online. Buy some books about the subject and read them. Apply the things you learn, try them out and accept that a lot of what you do will fail.

How would you advise new graduates be more financially successful in their career?

Be open minded about the fact that to succeed financially, eventually you are going to have to become comfortable with learning about business AND promoting services to pet owners.

Who is the most influential person in your life?

My wife, Anne. She is highly motivated, efficient and does 10 times more than I do without even breaking a sweat and with a smile on her face.

If you could meet anyone in the world, who would it be and why?

Sir Richard Branson. He is one of the few true entrepreneurs. He is ethical, amicable and interesting.

What is your favourite quote or saying?

I can make another dollar but I can’t make another minute. Time is the most valuable asset.

Thank you Dr. P Paolo Lencioni

Contact information:
paolo@aplaccountants.com.au
tel: 07 34880131
Website: www.aplaccountants.com.au, www.profitdiagnostix.com

 

“It’s not your business”…..says Simon Palmer after he helps you sell it!!!

Simon Palmer has a Bachelors of Arts, a Bachelor of Economics and is a Licensed Real Estate Agent and Business Broker. He has extensive experience working in healthcare recruitment and practice sales, and is founder of Australia’s largest dental and vet brokerage- Practice Sale Search. His company sells more than 60 practices a year, and runs workshops and seminars on exit planning and practice sales throughout Australia.
VetPrac would like to welcome Simon Palmer to the education team…Read on to learn more about him!

Simon, you are the Founder and Managing Director of Practice Sale Search. Tell us how you got into this line of work?

I come from a dental/medical family and, between family members and their clinical friends, I saw many clinicians with great practices stumble when it came time to sell their practice.

They were either trying to do it themselves at the end of a long day, or using a non-industry-specific agent who didn’t understand their business. The process was always frustrating and stressful and the results were almost always compromised.

I had been working in dental recruitment for some time and understood the business intimately. We had a great database, so I decided to fill the gap in the marketplace, and we quickly became busy.

A few years ago, I met Tony Thelander, and we saw a similar need in the vet marketplace. Between the two of us, Tony had an intimate knowledge of vet business and, by that stage, I knew practice sales inside out, so we decided to join forces in Vet brokerage.

What are the top 3 things to consider when selling a practice?

1. There is an old saying that if you have two hours to cut down a tree, spend the first hour sharpening your axe. A similar sentiment can be said of practice sales. To make sure you have a clear run at the finish line, you need to spend time in preparation before you even start to ensure that you aren’t scrambling around when you have a buyer ready to go. This means gathering documentation like financials, major equipment inventory, leases on premises, council permits, associateship agreements, etc. You also need to have clear success criteria and know the post-sale commitment you are willing to give.

2. There is a reason why world records are broken in a race environment, rather than a man alone on a track. It often takes competition biting at our heels to bring the best results. The same is true in practice sales. Dealing with a single buyer alone is rarely going to achieve the best results. You need competitive tension and fear of missing out to bring the best offers forward.

3. There is a tendency among many people to engage a friend or relative to represent them as a lawyer in their practice sale, regardless of their suitability or experience with the task. Commercial law is different from family law or conveyancing, and the stakes are too high for a vendor to risk getting it wrong with a friend that is learning on the job. I would strongly encourage anyone selling a business to engage a commercial lawyer experienced in your type of transactions

Many business owners will attempt to sell their own business. Tell us the benefit of seeking professional advice.

There are several reasons why a vet practice owner should engage a professional to help them sell their practice:

1. A professional broker has access to mny buyers, which an individual vendor will not.

2. Most vets are time poor. A sale involves many, many hours of the vendor’s time in gathering and collating documentation, negotiation, getting legals done, etc. When this is done by a vendor, between clients, or at the end of the day, it is often tainted by fatigue or lack of time.

2. I think that most people would acknowledge that a professional in any field will almost always achieve better results than a first-timer. A professional knows the variables, the pressure points, the common pitfalls and how to achieve optimal results.

Most home owners recognise the value of engaging a real estate agent to sell their house, rather than putting a home-made sign on their lawn and trying to sell it themselves as a D.I.Y project. However, when they are selling their business, an asset that is often the result of a lifetime of hard work, people often have a false sense of security handling it themselves. The results of the sale should make a big difference to the vendor’s quality of life post-sale. When the stakes are that high, it might be time to call in a professional.

In today’s market, do you find that younger or older people are investing in owning a practice?

There isn’t a dominant profile among buyers. Purchasers who approach us are young and old, recent graduates and experienced, first-time owners and old hands at ownership, owner operators and corporates. These different profiles are often competing for the same practice.

In your opinion, what is the most common reason for owners wanting to sell their practice?

It’s hard to pinpoint one main reason that people sell. There are, however, a few common reasons I have come across. These include retirement, selling to focus on other interests or business opportunities, breakdown of a partnership, and divorce. Sometimes people find that being a business owner comes with a lot of stress and paperwork and they just want to work as a clinician and not have the burdens of ownership. Unfortunately, we also become involved with distressed sales (where the owner is selling due to illness) from time to time.

What do you like to do to wind down?

I have two young kids, so I spend a lot of time hanging out with them, which, while tiring, is a great way to unwind. I also run, enjoy reading, and have recently gotten into gardening.

Contact information:
www.practicesalesearch.com.au
(02) 9328 4678
info@practicesalesearch.com.au

The Path of a Specialist – Meet Dr Andrew Levien

In vet school, Dr. Levien was worried about becoming a surgeon, but he made the cut…Just Kidding.

Some people stumble through life, whereas others have a clear vision of who they are and what they want to become. The latter was the case for Dr. Andrew Levien.  Growing up around dogs and horses and spending large amounts of his spare time being a spectator at an equine specialist surgical facility was where it all started. When asked about the defining moment when he wanted to be a surgeon, his answer was “It was around age 15 years old, I knew I wanted to be a veterinarian and a surgeon. As time went on I realised that small animal surgery was a broader field (in terms of surgical diseases) and so I switched from equine to small animals in my final year of veterinary school”.

Whilst studying to be a veterinarian, Andrew was already setting the bar high by being granted 7 different awards before graduating with his BVSc (Hons). Since then, he found himself travelling to London for a rotating internship at the Royal Veterinary Collage from 2009-2010, then a surgical Internship at Louisiana State University from 2010-2011, a surgical residency at Animal Medical Centre in Manhattan NY from 2011-2014, was a staff surgeon at Veterinary Surgical Centers in Washington DC from 2014-2016 and is now the proud Director of Veterinary Specialists of Sydney. Within this time he has also found the time to publish several journal articles and present at a handful of conferences.

Spending a large amount of his career overseas, we asked Dr. Levien what he missed the most about being away. “The first 6 months you seem to miss everything about Australia.  As time goes on, I begin to love being away and embracing all that is different about living in a foreign country. Aside from friends and family, the thing that I missed the most about Australia was our lovely white sand beaches and moderate climate. The warm winters and pleasant Sydney summers are a treat compared to New York and London!”.

Fair enough! We are glad the unwelcoming winters brought him back to Aus and VetPrac is certain that vets here can benefit from his knowledge and expertise.  For those that wish to further their education or specialise in surgery, Andrew has some great advice for you: “Have a plan, but be flexible in where you would be prepared to work.  Consider international opportunities. Be prepared to work hard, study hard and write publications. It is a demanding time of your life, but well worth it”!  Also, for all the general practitioners doing the day to day surgeries, remember “you don’t know what you don’t know! Read widely, learn from experienced vets, be logical, and take your time. Like sports, practice makes perfect”.

Although his expertise covers all spectrums of surgery in small animals, Andrew has a soft spot for knees and elbows!  We were very curious what he enjoyed most about these joints and we couldn’t help but love the response…”Knee surgery: That TPLO is brilliant…!  It is an ingenious versatile solution to a complex problem. Transforming a “tripod” pet to a “sound pet” in a few weeks, to an “athlete” in a matter of months is quite amazing.   Elbows: I really enjoy arthroscopic removal of fragmented medial coronoid processes…there is a satisfaction in not only removing the fragments, but in performing minimally invasive surgeries and seeing the pet being able to walk on their limb the same day!”.

Spoken like a true specialist and mentor- or dare I say superhero…

To gain a little bit more insight into who Dr. Andrew Levine really is, we asked him some random questions.

Dr. Levine, if you could have any superhero power in the world, what would it be and why?

“To fly- it would be an amazing feeling to experience life like a bird!  I envy those birds (not the plovers)”!

What is the smallest patient you have performed surgery on? What about the largest?

“I repaired a femur fracture (with butterfly fragment) in a rat (went great!). Sad to say, that the largest is probably on a horse or a cow.”

Who is the most influential person in your life?

“There have been a couple of role model surgeons in my life that I have aspired to be… my friend and mentor Dr. Bill Liska from the USA is a close surgeon friend that I look up to. He is most well known for performing the most number of total hip replacements in the world (over 2000!) and I was fortunate that he taught me how to do them! Now I am, sadly addicted to hip replacements also… it’s super satisfying surgery to do in dogs as small as Yorkies, to those as large as Mastiffs!”

Even though Dr. Levien has already achieved so much, he has lots of ideas for further research projects.  Also, he is currently working by bringing high-quality, affordable surgery to general practices through his new mobile surgical company – Veterinary Specialists of Sydney.  In the future Dr. Levien “would like to refine the way we perform cranial cruciate ligament surgery”- and there is no doubt that he’ll eventually achieve that as well.

How does he do it all and have a life as well? “Time management is key…find ways to simplify your life, perhaps by delegation or release or responsibility, so that you can have more time to do the “other things” you love doing! You may help animals, but don’t forget about helping yourself!”

Thank you, Dr. Andrew Levien, for giving us an insight into you and all you have accomplished.  Check out his business HERE and he is happy for the VetPrac community to contact him.  Better yet – meet him in person at that upcoming Stifle Surgery workshop later this year!

 Wrriten by Alena Felkai.

VetTips: TTA & Stifle Surgery

Tip 1: What is the leading reason for lameness in dogs- that’s right, cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) disease!

Approximately 70% of dogs presented for hind limb lameness that weigh more than 18kg are most likely to suffer from a ruptured cranial cruciate ligament.

Tip 2: The importance of the CCL

The CCl is composed of two parts:

1. The craniomedial band – this band is taut in flexion and extension

2. A larger caudolateral band – the band is taut only in extension

The CCL limits internal rotation of the tibia relative to the femur to stabilize the knee in extension. Ruptures occur when the breaking strength of the ligament is exceeded. The breaking strength is thought to be four times the weight of the dog.

Tip 3: Tibial Tuberosity Advancement (TTA)

By advancing the tibial tuberosity cranially to the point where the patellar tendon and tibial plateau are perpendicular to each other in a standing angle of the canine stifle, the quadriceps can only pull the tibia caudally, eliminating cranial thrust and converting it to caudal thrust….thus creating a “cruciate ligament”

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Want to learn more about the disease and how to fix it?

JOIN US at the TTA and Stifle Surgery Workshop

Tibial Tuberosity Advancement is the technique choice worldwide for many veterinarians treating cruciate disease in all sizes of dogs. Providing a modern approach to cruciate disease will increase practice profits and maximise patient health. Develop skills in this workshop that are immediately applicable to general practice. If you value the return on your CE investments then this is the course for you!

VetPrac provides Australian Veterinarians with an exclusive opportunity to develop and practice modern and established techniques in cruciate repair. With unprecedented access to elite surgical training equipment, you will have the chance to practice techniques, advance your skills and help your patients better than before. Classes are intimate, providing the ideal environment for building confidence in your techniques.

Click HERE to find out more about the two opportunities to JOIN US.

Click the link below to register!

February 9th – 10th University of Queensland, Gatton QLD

February 24th – 25th University of Adelaide Roseworthy, South Australia

VetTips: Equine Nerve Blocks & Lameness

Tip 1:

Signalment influences differential diagnosis in equine lameness. For example a common clinical presentation is proximal metacarpal pain but the causes often differ if the patient is a sports horse or racehorse. In a racehorse the primary suspicion may be primary suspensory desmitis, while in a racehorse and avulsion fracture is higher up the differential list.

Tip 2:

The calcaneal bursa ACTUALLY has two components!

1: A bursa underneath the gastroc tendon – gastrocnemius calcaneal bursa

2: A bursa between the gastroc tendon and Superficial Deep Flexor Tendon – the intertendinous calcaneal bursa AND – there may be a (3.+/-Subcutaneous bursa).

Tip 3: 

Differentiating Musculoskeletal from Neurological causes of lameness.

Most common musculoskeletal gait abnormalities that appear similar to neurologic abnormalities are:

– LAMINITIS – foot lameness is a much more common cause of a stumbling gait than neurologic disease
– Multiple limb lameness
– Muscle disorders (HYPP, exertional rhabdomyolysis)

If you want to get hands on experience and work with specialists come along to our Equine Nerve Blocks & Lameness Workshop!

Perform at your best and gain client confidence after attending this nerve blocks and lameness workshop. If you are a new vet, a mixed practitioner, an equine vet or coming back after a sabbatical and want to improve your lameness repertoire, then this is the workshop for you.

Join us April 12 – 13 in Wagga, Wagga NSW

Click the buttons below to learn more or to register >> https://www.vetprac.com.au/our-workshops/

Canine Rehabilitation & Sports Therapy – Top Tips

Tip 1: What is the benefit of prehab and rehab?

Prehab: Sometimes prehab is considered a luxury but it can certainly make rehab easier. The better the range of motion, flexibility and strength prior to surgery, the easier and faster the rehab will be. Therefore working on these 3 areas, well within the comfort level of the patient, is a great advantage.

Rehab: Rehab can be broken down into 3 phases; acute, subacute and chronic.

ACUTE PHASE: Addresses pain and inflammation with modalities and manual techniques. We find that Laser and joint compressions are particularly helpful in accelerating the acute phase of rehab.

SUB-ACUTE PHASE: Promotes healing, range of motion, weight bearing and proprioception. This will include manual techniques to move the joint with proper arthrokinematics and stretching with emphasis on the belly of the muscle.

CHRONIC PHASE: Emphasizes on strengthening and advanced proprioception. In this phase we increase the demands of the muscle and add balance challenges.

Tip 2: Treatment goals and techniques are important in canine rehabilitation!

There are many treatment goals for manual therapy which include:

Increase circulation

Decrease swelling

Increase tissue extensibility

Reduce adhesions

Increase scar mobility

Eliminate trigger point

Promote tendon and ligament healing

Increase ROM

Decrease pain

Decrease muscle spasm

Facilitate or inhibit neuromuscular activity

The technique for a particular condition depends on the goals of the treatment. We must also consider the size and shape of the muscle, tendon, ligament, or fascia; and the pathological state of the tissue.

Tip 3: You don’t need fancy expensive equipment to implement therapy into your practice!

There are many therapeutic exercises that address proprioception, balance, muscle strengthening, endurance and gait retraining using common items. The important thing is to implement exercises that are safe for the patient as well as the handler.

Some of these tools can be physio balls, cavaletti poles, planks, blocks, land treadmill, balance discs, tunnels, air mattresses, weights, rocker boards and wobble boards.

Want to learn more?…..

JOIN US at the Canine Rehabilitation & Sports Therapy

Develop skills in clinical assessment, goal-setting, treatment planning and outcome measurement in canine rehabilitation from a physical therapy perspective. This case-based course highlights orthopedic conditions and injuries involving the extremities and the spine. Practical applications of joint mobilization, modalities and therapeutic exercise are covered. Participants get hands-on experience with dogs on site.

The business of canine rehabilitation is discussed as well as pertinent legal and ethical issues. This course will also cover canine neurological rehabilitation. Students get hands-on experience with dogs on site as they review how to perform a neurologic exam and apply neurophysiological facilitation techniques. Developing goal-focused treatment plans and assessing outcomes in canine neuro-rehabilitation patients are also covered.

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