Volume 12 Issue 8

An evidence-based approach to workplace anaesthesia training. Part 2

Part one of this article considered the value of using educational evidence to teach student veterinary nurses (SVNs), discussed the characteristics of SVNs as learners, and described the importance of developing SVNs—not only in their anaesthetic skills, but also in becoming more self-directed professionals. As part one highlighted some of the challenges that SVNs experience as they attempt to learn in a veterinary practice, this second part will consider some common questions about veterinary nursing teaching and provide examples of techniques that can be used by registered veterinary nurses (RVNs) to improve teaching strategies for anaesthesia in the workplace. While some of the educational theories mentioned may be dated, this article aims to use supportive contemporary evidence to show how they are still relevant to help guide our teaching.

Fungal infections in cats and dogs

Fungal infections are an easily diagnosable cause of skin disease in companion animals. This article aims to give an overview of the more common fungal infections seen in cats and dogs, how to investigate them, and how to treat them. A small section on rarer fungal infections is included for information. Veterinary nurses are often involved in dermatology clinics, so knowledge of both common and rarer dermatomycoses can be very useful.

The potential benefit of local anaesthetics during routine ovariohysterectomy

Registered veterinary nurses (RVNs) play an essential and responsible role in pain management by identifying and alerting the veterinary surgeon (VS) to allow the appropriate management of pain. This comes with a legal and moral obligation in accordance with the Animal Welfare Act (2006) and the Code of Professional Conduct for Veterinary Nurses to provide prompt analgesia to their patients. Ovariohysterectomy is a common procedure performed within veterinary practices. It is a painful procedure and appropriate analgesia is paramount otherwise there could be compromises to the patient's recovery. Patients with inappropriately managed analgesia are more likely to interfere with their wound and have an increased risk for surgical site infections. Using local anaesthetics during the procedure is likely to show intraoperative and postoperative benefits to the patient. RVNs can be the leading force for a multimodal analgesia approach by using current evidence-based research, utilising their skills and applying their knowledge to collaborate with the VS to provide exceptional care for their patients. This will provide further evidence and justification towards the protection the RVN title.

Nursing the canine immunemediated haemolytic anaemia patient part 2: supportive care and nursing

Patients with immune-mediated haemolytic anaemia (IMHA) require substantial nursing care considerations, and can be very unwell on presentation. The registered veterinary nurse (RVN) plays an important role, with comprehensive supportive care of vital importance. Patients with IMHA have the potential for many complications, therefore it is important for the RVN to have knowledge of the condition, its treatment options, and how they may impact the patient's needs. Alongside vigilant nursing, and frequent communication with the clinician, the RVN's impact on these patients can be vast, making them extremely rewarding cases to care for.

Use of therapeutic laser in the veterinary field

Therapeutic laser is an increasingly popular tool used in veterinary medicine. Therapeutic laser for veterinary patients aids the body's natural healing process, decreases healing time, alleviates pain and inflammation, and helps to delay progressive diseases. Therapeutic laser can be used immediately following procedures, in postoperative healing, and in a variety of disease processes. Therapeutic lasers are potentially dangerous tools and should be used with caution by trained veterinary nurses. When used properly, the therapeutic laser penetrates the patient's tissues to aid in cell regrowth and reduce pain and inflammation. In order to properly utilise this tool, the veterinary nurse must know what a therapeutic laser is, how it works, and how to handle it properly for each case. Once these concepts are mastered, therapeutic laser can be used by the veterinary nurse, under the supervision of the veterinarian, on a daily basis to help patients with a variety of needs.

Unilateral anal sacculectomy for anal sac apocrine gland adenocarcinoma with urethral involvement

The patient presented to a veterinary hospital with a month-long history of ‘scooting’ and a right-sided anal gland mass. A diagnosis of a stage 2 anal sac apocrine gland adenocarcinoma was confirmed, and the patient underwent a right-sided anal sacculectomy. There was involvement of the urethra and adherence to the rectum and a subsequent urethral incision was necessary, which was surgically repaired at the time of surgery. The patient was hospitalised for several weeks postoperatively for urinary catheter care and further nursing interventions. The patient was discharged from hospital 3 weeks after surgery once the urethra had healed sufficiently enough to enable normal micturition and subsequently made a full recovery.

The role of social media in promoting organised dog fighting

Background: Organised dog fighting is a criminal activity in most developed countries. However, despite this, its occurrence continues. As with many underground activities, social media is likely to play a critical role in promoting organised dog fighting. Aim: The study aim was to review video content on three social media platforms to look for evidence of organised dog fighting. Methods: A content review of three social media platforms (YouTube, Facebook, Instagram) was conducted. Videos suggestive of organised dog fighting were categorised as: i) fights involving physical contact; ii) intimidation; iii) promotion of dog fights and iv) hypothetical ‘match-ups’. Information collected included video information (title, author, date posted, URL), content description (video description, breed description) and popularity of the video (number of likes, views and comments). Results: Fifty-eight incidents were identified (YouTube: <i>n</i>=27, Instagram: <i>n</i>=18, Facebook: <i>n</i>=13). On YouTube, 17 videos (63.0%) were fights involving physical contact, five (18.5%) were hypothetical ‘match-ups’, four (14.8%) were a promotion of dog fights, and one (3.7%) was a video of images of an organised dog fight. On Facebook and Instagram, all videos were fights involving physical contact. Where breed information was available, the dogs were largely described as pit bulls (YouTube: 51.9%; Instagram: 66.7%). These videos varied in their numbers of views (mean: YouTube: 682 856.0, Instagram: 773.6), comments (mean: YouTube: 319.5, Facebook: 10.3; Instagram: 0.6) and likes (mean: YouTube: 4868.4, Facebook: 434.8). Conclusion: More vigilance by social media platforms and their users to monitor, remove and report such footage is essential, especially where videos breach animal welfare rules and regulations. Further research into other online platforms or different formats through which dog fighting and/or promotion may occur, and the education of social media users to recognise signs that videos may be promoting organised dog fighting, would be of value.

Firework season 2021 — whizzes, flashes and bangs

With previously socially robust pets and younger less environmentally competent pets showing sensitivity to fresh exposures, it is important that people prepare well for the firework season. Claire Hargrave explains how.

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