Dr. Mauricio Dujowich | DVM, DAVS

Veterinary Surgery

When surgery is recommended for your pet, you want to know they are in the best hands, from the operating room to the recovery room. Our board-certified surgeon performs orthopedic, soft tissue, emergency and neuro-surgery. He works with our team of highly-trained technicians and staff to help your pet make a seamless and comfortable transition to recovery.

Dr. Mauricio Dujowich | DVM, DAVS

Veterinary Surgery

When surgery is recommended for your pet, you want to know they are in the best hands, from the operating room to the recovery room. Our board-certified surgeon performs orthopedic, soft tissue, emergency and neuro-surgery. He works with our team of highly-trained technicians and staff to help your pet make a seamless and comfortable transition to recovery.

Common Surgeries We Perform

Hemilaminectomy (Back Surgery)

If your dog has a slipped or herniated disc, a hemilaminectomy may be recommended by your vet. Because this operation deals with the area surrounding the spinal cord, only a surgeon specially trained in neurosurgery should perform this procedure.

The goal of the procedure is to remove the ruptured disc material to alleviate compression on the spine. Prior to the procedure, your pet will undergo a CT scan with contrast to appropriately visualize the affected disc.

This surgery may also be recommended for severe or recurrent cases of Intervertebral disc disease (IVDD). IVDD is a common ailment affecting dogs, especially breeds that have long backs, like dachshunds.

Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy

A tibial-plateau-leveling-osteotomy (TPLO) is a common orthopedic procedure to repair a torn cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) in dogs. The CCL is the primary weight-bearing ligament in a dog’s knee, making it susceptible to injury. In fact, injury to this ligament is the most common orthopedic injury in dogs. There are multiple types of surgical approaches, besides a TPLO, to repair knee injuries, so having an evaluation by a board-certified veterinary surgeon allows for the best plan to be made for you and your pet.

TPLO surgery xray

Arthroscropy

Arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure used to diagnose and treat many joint problems, such as elbow dysplasia. A narrow tube attached to a video camera is inserted through a small incision. The camera feed is transmitted to a video monitor, allowing our surgeon to have a close up look of the joint. Small instruments can then be used to treat your pet through the same small incision.

Fractures

Fractures that cannot heal by wearing a cast will require a surgical approach. Fracture repairs can be very complex, and can involve using screws, pins, or plates to ensure that the bone heals appropriately.

Pain control is a priority when a patient is seen for evaluation of a fracture. Diagnostic imaging is crucial for making an appropriate plan for repair. Many fractures can be properly evaluated through routine x-rays, while some may require a CT scan so that a 3D image can be made and allow for appropriate surgical planning. Special consideration must be made for fractures involving the growth plates in a young animal.

arthroscopy xray

Emergency Surgery

There are a wide variety of surgical procedures performed under emergency circumstances. Finding yourself faced with emergency surgery for your pet is stressful. Whether it is a foreign body removal, bleeding mass in the abdomen, treatment for GDV (Gastric Dilatation Volvulus, also known as “bloat”), or trauma repair, you can be confident that your pet is in good hands and will receive the best care possible.

Hip Dysplasia & Total Hip Replacement

We are the first hospital in the region to start a program of this caliber. Canine Total Hip Replacements have been performed successfully in dogs for decades. With advances in technology, you can expect an approximate 90% success rate, which results in an excellent quality of life and the ideal solution for dogs affected with hip dysplasia.

Hip replacements can be performed as early as one year of age, simply because dogs don’t live as long as humans. Several other surgical interventions that your pet may be a candidate for include: triple pelvic osteotomy, juvenile pubic symphysiodesis, or femoral head and neck ostectomy. If your pet is diagnosed with hip dysplasia, a consultation with a boarded veterinary surgeon to discuss the pros and cons of treatment strategies is recommended right away. Some of the surgical options are time sensitive, and the progression of hip dysplasia may render the procedure suboptimal.

If your pet suffers from hip dysplasia and you are interested in a total hip replacement, we encourage you to schedule a consult today to learn more. We are offering incentives for our initial group of candidates.

Please click here to see an animation about the surgery.

Mass or Tumor Removal

Mass removals can be a very straightforward procedure, but they can also be very complex. The location, size, and nature of the mass determine the complexity of the procedure and the overall outcome. For example, a golf ball-sized fatty tumor located just under the surface of the skin on a dog’s abdomen would typically be much easier to remove than a friable, walnut-sized mass interwoven around an internal organ that sits right next to a major blood vessel. For more complex cases, CT scanning allows us to more critically evaluate the extent of the mass and create an appropriate surgical plan.

What to expect

1. Pre-Surgery

Each surgical patient will undergo preoperative diagnostics specific to the procedure being performed. The most common diagnostics are blood work, x-rays, abdominal ultrasonography or CT scanning. These diagnostics allow the surgical team to make an individualized surgical plan for your pet. Your pet will receive appropriate pain control before, during, and after surgery. Click here to learn more about pain management.

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2. Anesthesia

Prior to surgery, an IV catheter and endotracheal tube will be placed, IV fluids started, and anesthesia will begin. The surgical area is then clipped and cleaned. While under anesthesia, your pet will be closely monitored by an experienced veterinary nurse who will alert the surgeon to any changes in your pet’s vital signs. We use advanced equipment to monitor heart rate, respiratory rate, body temperature, blood pressure, heart rhythm, carbon dioxide levels, and sometimes even blood gasses. Your pet will be closely monitored until they are fully recovered from the anesthetic event.

Appropriate pain management is critical before, during and after surgery. We provide a variety of progressive anesthetic and pain management techniques, known as “multimodal anesthesia,” including:
Continuous infusions of pain medications
Local nerve blocks
Epidurals
Pain patches
Oral medications

3. Recovery

All surgical patients will receive overnight, post-operative monitoring by a skilled veterinary nurse, and many are ready to go home the next day.

If emergency stabilization is not needed an emergency technician will bring you into an examination room to assess your pet’s vital parameters (heart rate, respiratory rate, and temperature) and obtain a history.  Next, the emergency doctor will review the technician’s notes and perform his/her own examination and discuss diagnostic and treatment options with you.  You will be provided an estimate for the recommendations.