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Student Perspectives
The Student Perspectives blog is a fresh and realistic snapshot of the life of veterinary medical and biomedical science students.
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Archive for tag: surgery

Piecing Together the Puzzle

Piecing Together the Puzzle We are now over a quarter of the way done with the semester! Whoop! Veterinary School is really good at keeping our minds and bodies busy, so even though it feels like the clock is barely ticking during some class days, it’s actually FLYING by! I can feel the jittery excitement in the air, because all of my third-year classmates can finally see a glimmer of light at the end of the vet school tunnel. We are gaining confidence, skills, and wisdom; we finally feel closer to being doctors and further from students. We third-year students have gotten more comfortable with basic surgical procedures so far this semester; nevertheless, I still sweat bullets the entire time. Putting non-powdered surgical gloves onto sweaty hands should be an Olympic sport. Gold medal goes to me for my hilarious and laborious struggle with such a menial task! This week, AFTER I took 10 minutes to get my gloves on, I proceeded to accidentally poke a hole in the glove on ... (Read More)

An Adoption Story

An Adoption Story This past month has been so exciting for me! Junior surgery has been my favorite third-year class all semester-but lately it's gotten even better. We recently graduated from goat and rabbit surgeries to cat and dog spays. Whoop! We are divided into groups of three for the semester and rotate though being the surgeon, assistant surgeon, and anesthetist for the procedures. This past month, every Friday afternoon cats and dogs from local animal shelters were transported to the vet school. The student scheduled to be surgeon that week took care of their assigned animal every morning and night. I was the assistant surgeon for our first shelter dog. Though we were nervous and the surgery took a little longer than what an experienced vet could do, everything went well, and our new spayed friend could go back into the world to be adopted. Several of my classmates got so attached to their surgery dogs that they ended up taking them home themselves. I wa... (Read More)

And the journey continues…

And the journey continues… The summer has quickly and abruptly come to an end and piles of notes and heavy textbooks are once again attached to my back. However, although these first few weeks of third-year have been somewhat overwhelming and fast-paced compared to the previous two years, I know that this year will be the most rewarding and interactive year of my professional career thus far. Beginning this semester, we start our medicine courses and even get to perform surgeries on live animals. Yes, that's right, live animals! For me, however, it is a little intimidating knowing that you are actually responsible for keeping your patient alive during surgical procedures and making sure that each procedure runs smoothly. Not only that, but we are also responsible for continual development of our technical skills including proper use of surgical instruments and suture patterns. Although intimidating, I feel excited and prepared to start live surgeries this semester. Surge... (Read More)

Another Successful Open House

Another Successful Open House This weekend, I had the privilege of participating in the College's largest, student-led community event of the year: Vet School Open House. For 18 years, the College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences has opened its doors for the public to experience what veterinary medicine is all about. Hundreds of students and volunteers come together on this special day to dedicate their time to educate and entertain nearly 15,000 guests with a vast array of animal exhibits and demonstrations. This year, I had the honor to serve as a co-chair and surgeon for the famous Teddy Bear Surgery. Teddy Bear Surgery is a child's dream. Boys and girls of all ages are encouraged to bring their favorite stuffed animal to the small animal hospital for "surgical repair". Tattered and torn from years of love (or, an unfortunate run-in with the family dog), these fuzzy friends often arrive with frayed stitching, broken arms, missing eyes, and some even requi... (Read More)

In most people’s minds, weekends are a time to relax and unwind from hectic weekdays. Apparently, we vet students do not share the same perspective…

In most people’s minds, weekends are a time to relax and unwind from hectic weekdays. Apparently, we vet students do not share the same perspective… Every morning and evening this week, I'm in charge of the care of our surgery patient. Consequently, my weekend started at 6:00 am Saturday morning. I might have been up, but the sun definitely was not. Thank goodness our surgery animal this week is a healthy, spry, little cat that doesn't mind a thorough physical exam (minus the temperature-taking, but honestly, who wouldn't be a little upset about a rectal thermometer?). After finishing the paperwork for our kitty, I headed to the large animal hospital for an equine castration clinic that one of our veterinary student chapters organized for the community. At this clinic, we vet students had the opportunity to handle every aspect of patient care with castrations in the field. We all rotated between anesthetist, surgeon, and assistant surgeon with each horse. I have watched numerous castrations in the past, but getting a chance to perform one was a great experience. We had clinicians and experi... (Read More)

Spaying and Clinic Rotations

Spaying and Clinic Rotations This week is the first of our surgeries for the area animal shelters. Because I have the position of surgeon this week in my group, I have been responsible for the daily care of our patient this week. We have been assigned a beautiful mixed breed female dog to spay tomorrow. My best guess is that she is a German Shepherd and Catahoula mix. We have also guessed that she is between 1.5 and 2 years old. Her kind, playful nature is a true testament to her innate trust of humans. Through all the hardship that she has endured in her life, she still has a positive happy outlook. I am nervous about performing the spay tomorrow. Although I know that I am fully prepared to perform the procedure, I am hopeful that it will go smoothly. I can't wait for her to recover and be ready for her new home. I am hopeful that a family will see the same beauty and caring eyes as I do, and that someone will show her that life can be better than she has ever experienced.... (Read More)

Third Year Begins...

Third Year Begins... It's a new year and classes are getting really exciting.  As a third year student, I finally get to choose my elective courses and spend time in both the small and large animal hospitals.  I recently spent the day in small animal surgery, where I watched a fourth year student perform a cat spay (under the watchful eye of one of the small animal surgeons).  It feels both strange and exciting to know that that will be me a year from now!  During the surgery, another third year student and I were grilled on the pharmacology and surgery prep that was going on.  I had to quickly recall information from last year to answer questions about opioids, analgesics, induction drugs and inhalant anesthetics, as well as sterile surgical preparation. Once the surgery was finished, we grabbed a quick lunch and then learned how to operate a surgical laser.  We practiced holding and moving the stylet by writing our names on a wet pops... (Read More)

And the new year begins

And the new year begins Howdy! Third year has started off great so far. It is going to definitely be a drastic change from the first two years of veterinary school. First and second year consisted of a set curriculum of mostly lecture. During third year, we get the opportunity to select our own elective classes, begin a few days of clinical rotations, and perform surgery. Yesterday, I was anesthetist for my first surgery of the year. It was exciting and absolutely nerve-wracking all at the same time. Being in charge of monitoring and maintaining the life of an animal while surgery is being performed is a huge responsibility.  Surgery requires an enormous amount of preparation, but when you are in the operating room, your patient is under anesthesia, and the surgeon makes the first incision. You are glad that you are prepared. It is important not only to know how to use the equipment and surgical instruments, what to expect during surgery, but also how to respo... (Read More)