Soft tissue surgery includes surgery of the abdomen, urogenital tract, respiratory tract, mouth and skin.
Colic and respiratory operations are the most common soft tissue surgeries that we perform.
Soft Tissue Surgery
Soft tissue surgery includes surgery involving the skin, abdomen, urogenital system and respiratory system, varying from a simple lump removal to complex airway or colic surgery.
We have two surgical diplomats based at the hospital, Ollie Crowe BVSc CertES(Orth)DipECVS MRCVS, and Jo Suthers BVM&S MPhil CertES(Soft Tissue) DipECVS MRCVS. Both Ollie and Jo are European recognised specialists in equine surgery and highly experienced surgeons. Ollie is also a diplomat of the European College of Veterinary Surgeons.
The anaesthesia team is headed by Richard Hepburn BVSc MS(Hons) CertEM(IntMed) DipACVIM MRCVS (ACVIM & RCVS Specialist in Equine Medicine), who is a diplomat of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine.
We have fully equipped separate theatres for orthopaedic and abdominal surgery. We also have a standing surgery room which is used increasingly for laparoscopy (keyhole abdominal surgery), head, neck and reproductive surgery.
Surgery performed on the urogenital tract include emergency caesarean section, laparoscopic (keyhole) surgery for removal of abnormal ovaries or testicles (cryptorchid or rig operations).
Respiratory tract surgery
Respiratory tract conditions can result in exercise intolerance, abnormal noise at exercise or nasal discharge and a variety of surgeries can be undertaken to rectify problems involving the larynx, pharynx, sinuses and teeth using either traditional surgical methods (such as a tie-back procedure) or "minimally invasive" methods, including endoscopic laser surgery.
Laser surgery is also used to assist with the removal of sarcoids or other skin tumours, helping to reduce the risk of recurrence. We regularly treat large or complex skin wounds using suturing techniques, skin grafting and limb immobilisation in fibreglass casts.
Emergency colic surgery
We have an emergency colic surgery team available around the clock to carry out corrective abdominal surgery and the intensive post-operative care which is so vital for survival. Survival rates have improved over the last 30 years, with over 80% of horses undergoing colic surgery being discharged from the clinic.