A dog who risked bleeding to death in a highly-complex operation at a Runcorn animal hospital has made a full recovery thanks to the skills of veterinary surgeons.

Nine-year-old Pablo, a crossbreed, underwent the life-or-death operation at Linnaeus-owned Northwest Veterinary Specialists (NWVS) to remove a tumour from a major blood vessel.

The extremely intricate surgery carries a mortality rate of up to 40 per cent per cent but was Pablo’s only chance of returning to his old life.

Matt Smith, surgery specialist at NWVS, said: “Part of Pablo’s tumour extended 7.5cm along the vena cava, which is the major vein returning blood to the heart and the surgery can be extremely challenging due to the risk of fatal bleeding. 

“It can also be extremely challenging from an anaesthesia perspective because of severe changes in blood pressure due to the release of adrenaline during removal of the tumour, and the temporary blocking of  blood flow back to the heart to allow removal to the tumour.”

Pablo had been referred to NWVS because of intermittent vomiting and a possible abdominal mass although he was still eating and drinking as normal and generally seemed himself. The diagnosis of a tumour of the left adrenal gland which had invaded the vena cava was made by internal medicine specialist Chantal Rosa and internal medicine intern Maria Lucas. 

Pablo’s grateful owner, Gemma Trevers from Chadderton near Oldham, said “It was really scary, especially when we were told that if he didn’t have the operation there wouldn’t be much chance of him surviving very long. 

“However we knew that the surgery was very complicated and there was around a 20 to 40 per cent chance he may not make it through the surgery. 

“We were heartbroken as we wanted to do everything we could for him but knew that we had to go ahead with something dangerous and potentially lose him in theatre to be able to give him a chance. 

“We were told that if he did make it through surgery his recovery and prognosis would be very good.”

Matt, who was assisted in managing Pablo’s treatment by specialist anaesthetist Joanna Raszplewicz and surgery specialist Jackie Demetriou, added: “Despite its complexities and significant challenges, the surgery was a success. Pablo has made a full recovery and it is an excellent outcome.”

Gemma added: “We felt extremely confident in Matt to be able to do the surgery and knew Pablo would be in the best hands. 

“Pablo is now like a puppy again. His quality of life is amazing and he is running around and going for longer walks.

“I am extremely thankful that NWVS were there to give Pablo a second chance and allow him to continue his life with us for many years to come.”

NWVS is one of the UK’s leading specialist-led animal hospitals. It offers care in anaesthesia and analgesia, diagnostic imaging, internal medicine, neurology and neurosurgery, oncology, orthopaedics and soft tissue surgery. 

For more information on Northwest Veterinary Specialists, visit www.nwspecialists.com or search for Northwest Veterinary Specialists on social media.

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