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Minimally Invasive Procedures
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Why Should I Bring my Pet to Willows for an Interventional Procedure?
Willows has a wide range of equipment and expertise to deliver a number of interventional procedures. Our Specialist Cardiology team are the most experienced Interventional Cardiology team in the UK. In addition, Andrew Kent, Specialist in Internal Medicine, has significant additional training in interventional procedures, both in the USA and with human interventionalists in the UK. Andrew has particular interests in endourology, respiratory and gastrointestinal procedures, and is the only clinician in the UK performing endoscopic biliary interventions.
Chris Shales, Specialist in Soft Tissue Surgery, has also undergone additional training in interventional radiology, as well as being a hugely experienced Soft Tissue Surgeon. Willows’ Specialist Orthopaedic team have over 15 years’ experience in arthroscopic treatment of several different joint conditions.
willows-cardiology-icon
Why Should I Bring my Pet to Willows for an Interventional Procedure?
Willows has a wide range of equipment and expertise to deliver a number of interventional procedures. Our Specialist Cardiology team are the most experienced Interventional Cardiology team in the UK. In addition, Andrew Kent, Specialist in Internal Medicine, has significant additional training in interventional procedures, both in the USA and with human interventionalists in the UK. Andrew has particular interests in endourology, respiratory and gastrointestinal procedures, and is the only clinician in the UK performing endoscopic biliary interventions.
Chris Shales, Specialist in Soft Tissue Surgery, has also undergone additional training in interventional radiology, as well as being a hugely experienced Soft Tissue Surgeon. Willows’ Specialist Orthopaedic team have over 15 years’ experience in arthroscopic treatment of several different joint conditions.
What is an Interventional Procedure?
Interventional procedures cover a wide range of techniques that have evolved to treat diseases that were previously untreatable and/or to treat diseases in a much less invasive and risky way. This is a rapidly evolving area of surgery which Willows is proud to be at the forefront of, offering a number of treatments that are not offered anywhere else in the UK.
What is an Interventional Procedure?
Interventional procedures cover a wide range of techniques that have evolved to treat diseases that were previously untreatable and/or to treat diseases in a much less invasive and risky way. This is a rapidly evolving area of surgery which Willows is proud to be at the forefront of, offering a number of treatments that are not offered anywhere else in the UK.
What is an Interventional Procedure?
Interventional procedures cover a wide range of techniques that have evolved to treat diseases that were previously untreatable and/or to treat diseases in a much less invasive and risky way. This is a rapidly evolving area of surgery which Willows is proud to be at the forefront of, offering a number of treatments that are not offered anywhere else in the UK.
What can I Expect if my Pet is Referred for a Minimally Invasive Procedure?
Many techniques use a combination of fluoroscopy (moving X-rays) and endoscopy (flexible or rigid steerable cameras) to access an area of the body and deliver a treatment under general anaesthesia. Access can be obtained through a natural opening (mouth, airway, urinary tract etc.) or through the skin into a blood vessel or body cavity (percutaneous).

These procedures are often treated with a multi-disciplinary approach involving Specialists from our Internal Medicine, Cardiology, Diagnostic Imaging, and Soft Tissue Surgery teams.

Fig 1: Minimally invasive interventional procedures
What can I Expect if my Pet is Referred for a Minimally Invasive Procedure?
Many techniques use a combination of fluoroscopy (moving X-rays) and endoscopy (flexible or rigid steerable cameras) to access an area of the body and deliver a treatment under general anaesthesia. Access can be obtained through a natural opening (mouth, airway, urinary tract etc.) or through the skin into a blood vessel or body cavity (percutaneous).

These procedures are often treated with a multi-disciplinary approach involving Specialists from our Internal Medicine, Cardiology, Diagnostic Imaging, and Soft Tissue Surgery teams.

Fig 1: Minimally invasive interventional procedures
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What are the Most Common Conditions Treated?
Conditions:

A number of heart conditions can be treated using an interventional approach, including:

  • Closure of abnormal blood vessels (patent ductus arteriosus)
  • Stretching narrowed blood vessels (balloon dilatation of pulmonic stenosis)
  • Treatment of abnormal heart rhythm (pacemaker implantation).

A significant proportion of the gastrointestinal tract can also be accessed with an endoscope allowing treatment of certain obstructions (oesophageal narrowing or stricture), removal of polyps and treatment of bile duct abnormalities (narrowing or gall stones).

The airways are easily accessed with an endoscope for treatment of disease. This approach is regularly used to treat fungal infections of the nose (sinonasal aspergillosis) and collapse of the windpipe (tracheal stenting for collapse), as well as a number of other therapies including:
  • Balloon dilatation or stenting for nasopharyngeal stenosis
  • Tracheal stenting for drug-refractory tracheal collapse or other obstructive diseases
  • Endoscopic debridement and minimally invasive treatment of sinonasal aspergillosis

Interventional endoscopy of the urinary tract has allowed the development of minimally invasive therapies for conditions that previously required abdominal surgery. This includes:

  • Treating blocked tubes (ureteral or urethral obstructions) with stents
  • Correcting congenital abnormalities (for example ablating ectopic ureters)
  • Removing polyps/cancers.

Many interventional procedures are particularly appropriate in managing patients with cancer which can frequently cause obstructions.

  • Tumour ablation
  • Transarterial embolisation and chemoembolisation
  • Stenting of malignant obstructions, e.g. urethra, oesophagus, rectum

Problems with blood vessels can sometimes be resolved using fluoroscopy guidance, including liver shunts and blocked blood vessels (due to clots or tumours). Sometimes the blood supply to diseased areas (for example tumours) can be deliberately blocked in order to treat that disease, this is called embolisation.

Procedures:

Key-hole surgery has been utilised at Willows for some time for neutering female dogs, biopsying organs and exploring body cavities for disease.

Our orthopaedic Specialist regularly use arthroscopy to examine the inside of joints and to perform certain treatment including;

  • Detailed intra-articular joint examination
  • Biceps tendon release for bicipital tenosynovitis
  • Minimally invasive treatment for elbow dysplasia including fragment removal and sub-total coronoidectomy
  • Arthroscopic assessment of the cranial cruciate ligament and the menisci for early diagnosis of cranial cruciate ligament deficiency