I worked with the cardiothoracic surgery team in the on-campus referral hospital of RVC. This team focus on cardiopulmonary bypass surgery in dogs, and is one of 3 teams in the world that are able to perform mitral valve repair in dogs with degenerative mitral valve disease (DMVD). They perform 1-2 of these complicated and specialized surgeries per week, as the rest of the week they are running clinics and treating patients for other heart conditions.
My role was to help with research on the pullout strength of sutures specifically on the papillary muscle. As this work was limited by time constraints of the veterinarians involved, I also began working on an app for clients to monitor their pet’s breathing rates and track medications, as with DMVD, monitoring breathing rates can help give clients a feeling of more control over the condition and provide the RVC vets with more data about the baseline levels of the patient.