Most veterinarians perform surgery in some capacity, but veterinary surgery specialists perform complex procedures day in and day out. At first glance, a surgeon’s skillset may seem exclusively limited to the operating room, but surgeons are also skilled in other areas, such as orthopedic and sports injury diagnosis and advanced imaging interpretation.
An in-person surgical referral is undeniably beneficial, but the benefits of consulting remotely with our VESPECON board-certified surgeons are likely less obvious. The truth is, however, that your patients don’t always require or cannot always accept a surgical referral, but consulting with our surgery team can still improve patient care in your clinic. Here are six benefits of a veterinary surgery specialist consultation.
#1: Help with orthopedic conundrums
Orthopedic injuries and diseases can be tricky, so when you cannot figure out a patient’s persistent lameness or aren’t sure about next diagnostic steps, consult one of our veterinary surgeons. With our virtual consulting platform, our surgeons, who all have vast experience, can observe patients walking and running during a lameness examination, confirm or postulate a potential diagnosis, and help you develop an appropriate treatment plan once you determine a diagnosis.
#2: Better diagnostic imaging interpretation
What’s going on in that X-ray or CT? Although radiologists are skilled in image interpretation overall, surgeons spend much of their day looking at X-rays to diagnose various conditions or determine their severity. While a radiologist can tell you what’s going on, a surgeon can tell you what they would do next. So, combine two consultations into one by speaking with a surgeon the next time you need assistance with evaluating a hip or finding a suspected OCD lesion.
#3: Assistance with surgical planning
Many general veterinarians have advanced surgical training and the skills and equipment to perform advanced surgical techniques, but choose primary practice rather than specialization. Still, these veterinarians may occasionally need assistance from a veterinary surgeon who uses imaging studies frequently to plan surgeries and can help when you are unsure about the best approach.
#4: Guidance on surgical techniques
When you have the ability to perform a specific procedure but haven’t done so in a while, consulting with a surgeon can give you confidence by helping you quickly brush up on the appropriate techniques that you customize for your individual patient. They can also answer nagging questions that pop into your head during surgeries, but generally have no-one to ask, especially if you’re the sole practitioner. What suture pattern is best? How can I troubleshoot this unexpected complication? Our surgeons can answer.
#5: Offer the best surgical alternatives
For poor surgical candidates, or a client who refuses a referral when you cannot perform the needed surgery, what is the best you can offer? Veterinary surgeons treat many conditions medically and can provide you with up-to-date recommendations and spectrum-of-care options that you may not be aware of, so consult with our surgeons and use their expertise to your advantage.
#6: Improve safety for high-risk and emergency procedures
Veterinary surgeons have not only surgical skills and expertise but also have a thorough knowledge about anesthesia, and they perform high-risk procedures regularly. So, consult with our surgeons about technique hacks to minimize surgical risks, reduce anesthesia time, and improve your patients’ safety.
The VESPECON Difference
Our virtual consulting service is designed with the busy veterinarian in mind. We use a video chat platform that encourages face-to-face connections and allows our specialists to visually examine your patients’ movements in real time. Share your thoughts and findings and get answers to your toughest questions immediately, rather than waiting for a return call or email from your local specialty clinic.
Our concierge team can connect pet owners interested in taking the next step with a local specialist in our network and secure a timely appointment. Let us do the work for you and provide a seamless transition from consultation to referral and back.
Not all clients have the means or desire to seek specialty surgical care, but you can offer them a viable alternative. A VESPECON surgery specialist consultation can help you make tough diagnoses, guide you through difficult surgeries, and provide clients with all available treatment options. Contact us to learn more or sign up to start consulting when you need us.