Internal medicine involves diseases affecting internal organs and systems. We utilise a wide range of techniques and equipment to help us reach a diagnosis including diagnostic imaging, clinical pathology and endoscopy. We also work closely with other services within our hospital, as one of the strengths of Wear Referrals is being able to draw upon the joint expertise of vets specialising in different disciplines.
We also benefit from a dedicated intensive care unit, which allows high-level care to be delivered around the clock to critically ill patients.
All veterinarians working within the service are either training towards, or already possess, specialist status in internal medicine, awarded by the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons or the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine. This is the highest level of clinical qualification currently available.
A dedicated team of Registered Veterinary Nurses (RVNs) work alongside the clinicians to afford the best possible standard of care to patients within our service.
In addition to seeing patients referred to us, we are happy to provide free advice to vets in practice on request.
Internal medicine conditions that we investigate and treat:
- Endocrine conditions - hypoadrenocorticism, hyperadrenocorticism, diabetes mellitus, hyperaldosteronism, diabetes insipidus, pheochromocytoma.
- Swallowing disorders, including the use of barium swallow fluoroscopy using our digital fluoroscopy unit, and an inter-disciplinary approach with our neurology team.
- Respiratory disorders - investigations of chronic cough, tachypnoea, dyspnoea, pleural effusions, sneezing, nasal discharge, and epistaxis- often involving the use of CT, bronchoscopy and bronchoalveolar lavage, rhinoscopy and nasopharyngoscopy.
- Hepatobiliary disease - investigation and treatment of jaundice, increased liver enzymes, suspected portosystemic shunts, biliary disorders, hepatic lipidosis. Often using abdominal ultrasound, multi-phase contrast CT studies, and laparoscopic liver biopsies.
- Gastrointestinal conditions, including investigation of chronic diarrhoea, vomiting, regurgitation, weight loss, suspected malabsorption, dyschezia, haematochezia, perianal fistulas.
- Renal and urinary disorders – acute or chronic azotaemia (including intensive management of acute renal failure), dysuria, urinary incontinence, urinary obstruction, urolithiasis, haematuria, recurrent urinary tract infections.
- Pancreatic disease - acute and chronic pancreatitis, pancreatic insufficiency.
- Haematologic and immune-mediated disease – including immune-mediated haemolytic anaemia, thrombocytopenia, or neutropenia; non-regenerative anaemia; immune-mediated polyarthritis, ulcerative or erosive skin or mucosal disease such as lupus and pemphigus-type disease, leukaemias, myasthenia gravis.
- Oncology - diagnosis and treatment of neoplasia or suspected neoplasia, adopting a multi-disciplinary approach. We have a dedicated chemotherapy suite for providing ongoing outpatient care for oncology patients.
- Other clinical signs commonly investigated by the medicine department: polyuria, polydipsia, polyphagia, reduced appetite, weight loss, unexplained weight gain, abdominal distension, abdominal pain, malaise, hypersalivation, pain on opening jaw, muscle-wasting, pyrexia of unknown origin.
All services are supported by a very well-equipped in-house laboratory, including endocrine testing and PCR testing.