Internal medicine specialist Scott Kilpatrick has said lessons taken from a trip to the US to see one of the leading interventional radiology services in the world will help shape the roll-out of a similar facility in our Glasgow hospital.

Scott travelled to the University of California-Davis to meet fellow specialist William Culp, who has extensive experience in using minimally-invasive medical procedures to treat small animals.

He spent a month shadowing Dr Culp and learning, first-hand, how valuable interventional radiology can be for both vets and their patients.

An image of veterinary specialist Scott Kilpatrick in America with Dr Culp, who taught Scott a new method of radiology treatment for animals. Image for Vets Now article on interventional radiology
Scott spent a month shadowing Dr Culp and learning first-hand how valuable interventional radiology can be

Our emergency and speciality hospital in Glasgow is currently undergoing extensive refurbishment and expansion work.

Once complete, it will include a custom-built intensive care unit, an entire floor dedicated to emergency and critical care, a specialist oncology treatment area, more theatres to facilitate increased demand, and the introduction of the interventional medicine service.

Scott said: “Interventional radiology allows procedures to be carried out in a minimally-invasive way with the guidance of fluoroscopy. These procedures include urethral and tracheal stenting, ureteric stenting, coil embolisation of intrahepatic portosystemic shunts and embolisation of liver and prostatic tumours.

“My time in the US has allowed me to build on my previous experience and begin to develop and grow the service at our Glasgow hospital. The expansion work at the hospital will provide us with the space and equipment to carry out these procedures.”

Vets Now hospital in Glasgow
The Vets Now hospital in Glasgow is currently undergoing a £1.5 million expansion

More than £1.5 million is being invested into extending the hospital, which employs 90 staff across clinical and non-clinical roles. The work is due for completion before the end of 2018 and will result in 10 new roles.

Scott added: “The principal aim of the expansion is to benefit our clients and the pet population of Scotland, but it will also give us an excellent facility to work in every day which is important.

“It’s very exciting and the equipment we’re getting — particularly fluoroscopy which is, in essence, real-time X-ray — will allow us to do these new minimally-invasive procedures. For example, the traditional way of fixing dogs born with abnormal blood vessels in their liver would be to perform open abdominal surgery to tie off those vessels.

"It’s very exciting and the equipment we’re getting will allow us to do these new minimally-invasive procedures."

Scott Kilpatrick Internal Medicine Specialist

“But using interventional radiology, we’ll be able to fix this without major surgery.”

The redevelopment of our Glasgow hospital, which treats around 5,000 out-of-hours emergency cases and 1,000 referral cases a year, will also give us the chance to accelerate our residency programmes.

These provide newly-qualified vets with speciality training under the supervision of experienced, board-certified faculty members, including Scott and his colleagues Tobias Grave and Dan Lewis.

An image of the exterior of the veterinary hospital in which Scott was taught how to use a new method of radiology for Vets Now article on Vets Now Glasgow
Scott spent a month at the University of California-Davis

Glasgow is one of three emergency and specialty hospitals run by Vets Now. Each hospital has emergency and critical care at its core, with complementary referral services including internal medicine, diagnostic imaging, oncology, soft tissue and orthopaedic surgery.

The hospital teams provide care that seamlessly moves from night to day and from emergency to elective referral case.