In May this year, for the first time in Dubai, the Modern Vet team of five veterinarians performed PDA surgery on an eight-month-old Pomeranian puppy who suffered from a severe congenital heart defect, Patent Ductus Arteriosus ( PDA). The ductus arteriosus is the communication between two large vessels leaving the heart: the pulmonary artery and the aorta. Holly’s diagnosis and treatment took place at Modern Vet, which is the only multi-specialty referral veterinary hospital in Dubai capable of treating PDA in dogs, along with a plethora of other conditions. Luckily for Holly, the operation went smoothly, allowing Holly to live a long and happy life.
The second innovative veterinary surgery took place in early October 2021 and was performed by Dr João Figueira and Dr Jose Botte from Modern Vet, Dr Cristina Epifanio and Dr Despina Hleiss managing anesthesia and ventilation. The patient, Jojo, an orange tabby cat was born with a persistent right aortic arch (PRAA). PRAA is a birth defect of the blood vessels of the heart that can affect the normal functioning of the esophagus in some dogs and, less commonly, in cats. Simply put, an embryonic branch of the aorta does not shrink and wrap around the esophagus when a puppy or kitten is born. This puts pressure on the tube, preventing food from passing through the esophagus when the animal eats, causing food to regurgitate or cough up. Although this vessel is normal in the developing embryo, its presence in the developed animal is problematic. The operation took about 2 hours, which is longer than expected due to the difficulty of operating on such a small patient. Dr Botte explains “There were no relevant complications, but it was indeed a challenge because everything is so small that it was very difficult to identify and isolate the relevant structure, namely the arterial ligament. persistent, which compresses the esophagus in PRA cases. “
Jojo’s parents first noticed that something was wrong at mealtime. Symptoms of a persistent right aortic arch became apparent once Jojo began to absorb solid foods. As the milk slid smoothly, the lumpy food got trapped in the esophagus resulting in a stretched structure and the inability to lower the food down, hence the symptom known as regurgitation.
These advances in the veterinary industry are revolutionary for the region, with the UAE at the forefront of veterinary medicine in the Middle East. None of this would be possible without the support and initiatives of the Ministry of Climate Change and Environment (MOCCAE). MOCCAE also recently introduced animal welfare rules and regulations in the protection of animal rights and in the fight against cruelty and abandonment of animals in the country.
Thinking back on the surgery, Dr Botte said: “The surgical team and the Cardiology Department at Modern Vet worked together to diagnose and perform this vascular surgery which will hopefully keep a very young kitten alive. a normal and healthy life. This highlights the importance of the first veterinary visits in the life of a pet; It is only by diagnosing possible congenital anomalies very early that we have the possibility of proposing curative interventions which, when the diagnosis is made too late, are no longer possible. This shows the value of a multidisciplinary team of highly trained veterinarians that enables Modern Vet to diagnose and treat complex conditions like this.