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Entries in internship (4)

Wednesday
Sep132017

The Expanding Field of Integrative Medicine

Thank you to Tiffany Murphy from Ross University for sharing with us her experience working with a rehabilitaion clinic.

The Expanding Field of Integrative Medicine

Primum non nocere can be translated to, “first, do no harm”. While this phrase is short, it is what I believe to be the most important phrase in veterinary medicine. Our primary goal is to cure disease and prevent or alleviate suffering. While traditional medicine solves most problems, sometimes the normal routes are not an option and clients wish to seek other modalities. At Georgia Veterinary Rehabilitation, Fitness & Pain Management (GVR) veterinarians are able to provide acupuncture, herbal medicine, massage, chiropractic, laser therapy, and rehabilitation to help promote healing after surgery, weight loss for a better quality of life, and pain management for temporary or non-curative diagnosis. The facility also provided the ability to get casts and carts fitted to animals in need.

Upon initial examination, the veterinarians were able to do an orthopedic examination on each animal to determine range of motion, crepitus, pain, and swelling of each joint. They also examined the vertebrae to determine pain and misalignment as well as the limbs for conscious proprioception. Depending on the responses of the patient, the veterinarian may determine to refer the patient for radiographs, ultrasound, or bloodwork. If the patient did not need a referral, the client could elect to begin some of the modalities offered.

Laser therapy was the most commonly used modality as it is a method of alleviating pain that nearly all patients had upon visiting the clinic. Laser therapy utilizes specific wavelengths of light to penetrate the skin and promote healing by vasodilation of the blood and lymphatic vessels.


Acupuncture was another commonly used therapy because it was helpful in stimulating nerve pathways in animals with weakness or loss of function in limbs. I was able to view three different types of acupuncture: traditional acupuncture, aquapuncture, and electroacupuncture. Aquapuncture was performed using B12 injections. Traditional and electroacupuncture were set up in the same manner except for the addition of electrodes placed on needles with electroacupuncture. Both types typically consisted of 20 needles in variable locations based on specific points used to heal different parts of the body.

 

Finally, the most common reason people were referred to GVR or sought out the facility was in search of rehabilitation. The rehabilitation sessions were monitored to the patient’s abilities and needs. Hind limb lameness often started with the underwater treadmill where a rehabilitation therapist was able to monitor the pet’s gait and level of tiring. Once the animal became stronger, they were able to do land sessions. Land sessions consisted of weave polls, wobble boards, and other equipment that would help strengthen specific muscle groups. Forelimb lameness or weight loss animals were often placed in the pool. They would wear a float coat and a therapist would be standing with them the entire time. With both the treadmill and the pool, the patient’s time moving increased as well as their speed depending on how the animal was doing currently and how the treatment effected the pet previously if done before. Following rehabilitation sessions, the animal would be stretched to help promote a range of motion.

 

My experience with GVR was beneficial in giving me the opportunity to visualize modalities that are not strongly incorporated into the veterinary curriculum. The therapies I was able to observe do not work in every patient, but have minimal negative side effects. Some therapies were used alongside traditional therapies or used when traditional therapies failed. This experience also allowed me to communicate with veterinarians about cases as well as view records of patients which allowed me to incorporate western and eastern medicine. I would encourage all students to get an experience that promoted further learning in the field because it has many studies proving its effectiveness, has limited adverse effects, and many clients are seeking alternate therapies because of the risks associated with some traditional methods.

 

Wednesday
Jul032013

AVMA's New Internship Page

The AVMA just launched a new page to make the daunting subject of internships a little easier. Check it out here!

Preview of the new internship page

 

Tuesday
Aug072012

Internships

Internships: are you planning on pursuing one or have you already been accepted?  Internships have been viewed as a way to gain more clinical experience as well as hone in on a specialty area.  But with the low salary figures and rising student debt, is it worth it? It might be the only path for those wishing to become board certified, but what about those who aren’t? Some say students may pursue an internship because they are still exploring career options, while others state that some grads lack the confidence to jump directly into practicing high quality medicine without the guidance of an internship program.  Are we getting all of the knowledge we need in veterinary school to dive in after graduation? Weigh in on the pros and cons of the internship experience and tell us how you decided whether or not to participate in one.

Honorable Mention, Life as a Vet Student Category
Sharon Ostermann, UC Davis

I’m a few weeks from beginning 4th year clinical rotations at this point and despite moments of serious consideration and contemplation over the past three years, I decided that I will not be pursuing a veterinary internship. Clearly, at this point, I cannot predict whether, as a new graduate, I will feel competent enough to go out on my own and practice good quality medicine (but, then again, we will only be partially through our clinical year when we have to make the decision of whether to apply for an internship).
Do I believe that an internship can be valuable? Absolutely! However, I believe it is an individual decision to be made on a case by case basis. For example, my decision to not pursue an internship after graduation is largely influenced by other life factors, including age.
Though I am not the oldest person in my class, I have taken a rather circuitous path to become a veterinarian that has been extremely rewarding in the lessons it has taught me, yet it’s also cost me something far more valuable– time. There was a point in veterinary school when I considered myself to have all the time in the world and I wanted to pursue an internship and a four year residency when I graduate. It wasn’t until I considered how old I would be when I finally started my career that I realized that I may need to re-evaluate.

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Saturday
Jul072012

Internship, anyone?

Internships: are you planning on pursuing one or have you already been accepted?  Internships have been viewed as a way to gain more clinical experience as well as hone in on a specialty area.  But with the low salary figures and rising student debt, is it worth it? It might be the only path for those wishing to become board certified, but what about those who aren’t? Some say students may pursue an internship because they are still exploring career options, while others state that some grads lack the confidence to jump directly into practicing high quality medicine without the guidance of an internship program.  Are we getting all of the knowledge we need in veterinary school to dive in after graduation? Weigh in on the pros and cons of the internship experience and tell us how you decided whether or not to participate in one.

Winner, Life as a Vet Student category
Oneal Peters, Colorado State University

Mid-way through my second year of vet school, I began to ponder the internship dilemma. Perhaps it is not a dilemma to those of us who are absolutely set on a certain path after graduation, but for me, I am not one hundred percent sure what I want to be when I grow up, other than a general practice veterinarian with an equine focus.  For me, and many others I suspect, there are an astonishing variety of opinions about internships, and you feel as if you are talking to Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde when you hear the myriad of contrasting thoughts on the matter. To further complicate the matter, small animal practices seem fine with hiring new grads, and internship tends to be reserved mainly for those wanting to specialize. On the opposite end of the scale, equine veterinarians generally prefer to hire veterinarians that have completed at least one year of an internship. All this information was like a school of indecisive fish swimming through my head. After a while, I became so confused that my own opinion and life plan changed week by week. Week one: Internship for sure. Week two: why shouldn’t I just go get a job? Week three: Maybe I won’t be ready? Back to internship. And it went on and on, but after a while I stopped fretting and listening to all the buzzing around me. Instead, I closely evaluated my goals and began to reflect back on advice I received before the internship question became so confusing.

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