Equine Services

Surgery

Soft Tissue                  Gastrointestinal (Colic)                  Laparoscopy

Trauma                        Laryngeal                                         Laser

Castrations                 Sinus

Orthopaedic               Arthroscopy

OUR SURGEON

Dr Maxwell Hall (BVSc (Hons), MANZCVS (Equine Surgery), Diplomate ECVS (Equine Surgery) - Director Dr Maxwell Hall is a registered specialist in Large Animal Surgery. He has worked in pioneering equine hospitals across the world and one of a very small cohort of equine veterinarians in WA to be recognised as a Diplomate of the European College of Veterinary Surgeons – Specialist in Equine Surgery. At the time he was the youngest person in the Southern Hemisphere to obtain such a title. 

 

Maxwell is also a Member of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists (MANZCVS – Equine Surgery) and received first class honours for his veterinary degree obtained from the University of Queensland in 2007. He has published many journal articles and is constantly developing and refining innovative surgical procedures. He regularly travels internationally to conference to keep up-to-date in all the advances in equine surgery.

The equine theatre is world class, designed with two recovery stalls to handle emergency cases. The rubber recovery stalls are equiped with monitoring cameras to keep an eye on our equine patients at all times of recovery from surgery. The standing surgery is an isolated standing crush for equine surgeries such as laparoscopic oviduct application for breeding mares, standing arthroscopy, wound and fracture repairs and sinus surgery. 

 

Laparoscopy:  Laparoscopy is when a camera is placed into the abdomen of the horse - which has been distended with carbon dioxide - to visualise the internal organs. The laparoscopy is attached to a video camera which displays the image on a monitor screen. The entire procedure is done under sedation and local anaesthetic. Only small, 1-2cm incisions are required in most circumstances. Laparoscopic procedures in horses are less invasive and are associated with less postoperative pain and inflammation. One of the latest advancements with 'key hole' surgery in the equine field is the use of laparoscopy to treat barren or sub-fertile mares. Debris within, or blocked oviducts, (the pipe that allows the egg to travel from the ovary to the uterus) are responsible for many failed pregnancies. Problem with the oviducts are usually a diagnosis reached after all other possible causes of infertility have been excluded. The application of PGE2  gel onto the surface of the oviducts is the treatment of choice for oviduct blockages. This medication will help the oviducts clear debris or blockages. The laparoscopy is done with the horse is standing in stocks, via laparoscopy. Many recent studies have shown that blocked oviducts are responsible for failed pregnancies of barren mares. Success rates (pregnancies) can be up to 90% of horses following application onto PGE2 gels on oviducts. Many of these horses treated are in their late teens and may have been barren for several years. Mares can be inseminated during the same cycle as the procedure and, due to the procedure being 'key hole', they recover within days. Mares that obtain a pregnancy following the procedure are excellent candidates for the same treatment the following year.

Laser Surgery:  Lasers have made their way into the veterinary field. From sarcoids to upper respiratory tract surgery - they have many uses. The removal of vocal cords, ventricles and treatment of soft palate problems are all possible. With the aid of local anaesthetic and sedation the laser fibre can be passed up an endoscope portal, which has been placed into the upper respiratory tract via the horse's nasal passage. The area of concern is then grasped with the aid of long forceps and the laser can be aimed to cut the problematic tissue. The surgical field is visualised on a monitor next to the standing animal. 

Dental Procedures: (Refer to Dentistry)

Tenoscopic Surgery: The most commonly accessed tendon sheath is the digital flexor tendon sheath. This runs down the back of the fetlock to the pastern in all four limbs. It contains the flexor tendons, annular ligaments and other important soft tissue structures. Externally these swellings appear as ' windgalls; which are rarely a problem. However, in some instances (lameness, infection or severe swelling) they require surgical treatment. A camera is placed into the sheath after it has been distended with sterile fluid. Small incisions then allow a camera to be placed into the sheath via small 1cm portals. this 'key hole' surgery technique excellent visualisation of all the structures within the sheath and allows accurate treatment. Horses recover quickly and only need a few weeks box rest. 

Arthoscopy Surgery: The joints that can be accessed via arthroscopy include; coffin, pastern, fetlock, carpal, elbow, shoulder, hock, stifle, hip, mandibular and even articular facet joints within the neck. Arthroscopy is when a small camera is placed into a joint and 'key hole' surgery us performed to treat problem joints. Previously, a large incision into the joints would have been required, which led to long healing times and permanent lameness. Nowadays with the use of arthroscopic cameras the prognosis for many conditions is excellent. Conditions that are commonly treated with arthroscopy include the removal of bone fragments e.g OCD fragments) or treatment of damaged soft tissue structures within joints (cartilage, ligaments and inflamed synovium). Arthroscopic surgery can now be performed standing in some circumstances. 

Emergency 24hrs

West Coast

Veterinary Hospital

08 9393 3373