The future of veterinary oncology treatment, not just for animals…
Sometimes I get very lucky, and this week is one of them times (much needed after the past 2 months) as I was invited to the grand opening of the new Fitzpatrick Referrals Oncology and Soft Tissue Hospital in Surrey.
One of the things that I hate most about medicine is when the words “There is nothing we can do” come into play. Personally I don’t think these should ever exist, and yet when it comes to pets and animals they commonly are used. This was the start of change for the veterinary profession when after changing the face of orthopaedics Noel Fitzpatrick decided that something needed to be done about cancer.
As it was very well put today by Noel I’ll stick with it…
“Cancer doesn’t care if it is in your child or your Labrador; it is still a cancer cell!”
Yet though this is true, and many of the tumours seen between humans and animals are the same, animals do not get the same care that humans do. Whilst a animal shouldn’t be stuck in bed hooked up to tubes, it should still get the best treatment and chance of a cure as possible. And being different is where Noel has brought in one of the leading medical oncologists Dr Kevin Kow alongside two of the worlds best veterinary oncologists.
The building itself is amazing, and I really am jealous of the Surrey Vet School students that will get to learn and practice there. Everything is the most modern design using the latest in research to make it as relaxed experience for animals and owners as possible. From the cat wards where you can see every cat for monitoring but the cats cannot see each other through to a central prep area where everything is accessible from one easy space.
The last stop on the tour today was where the future is going to happen which is planned for 2016 when the UK’s most powerful animal linear generator will be installed. This will allow for high power radiation to be delivered accurate to very small areas within the body to help treat cancers of the brain, liver, spleen and kidneys.