That's News To Me

Pick Up The Pacemaker

That’s News to Me!

Daily dog news from around the globe 

Bristol, UK – Vets and human neurosurgeons are teaming up to treat epilepsy in dogs.

Epilepsy is a very common and very expensive condition in dogs, but Tom Harcourt-Brown, veterinary neurosurgeon with Langford Vets (part of the University of Bristol), has teamed up with Mike Carter, paediatric neurosurgeon at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children, to research improvements in treatment for dogs. This ground-breaking work could change the lives of epileptic dogs all around the world.

The new treatment involves the implantation of pacemakers (Vagus Nerve Stimulators or VNS) to control seizures and reduce the need for medication. While it isn’t a cure, it could still potentially save lives where dogs are not responding to other treatments.

The very first recipient of the new pacemaker was Jago the Border Collie, who had medically-unresponsive epislepsy, back in February. And the most recent recipient is Eva the Jack Russell Terrier. Eva had her first seizure two years ago and has been on medication ever since. Now dubbed “the bionic dog” by her human, this operation could literally change her life.

The team has worked together previously on other conditions as well, including cardiac failure and brain tumours. This “inter-species” collaboration is yet another example of the wonderful things that can be achieved if vets and human vets (also known as doctors) work together.

The human-dog bond is a very special one indeed. But “That Is Not News To Me”. In fact, by now it shouldn’t be news to anyone.


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