Winner of the EESVO scholarship, Dr. Bielecki, reports a four-week externship at Rowe Veterinary Referrals in Bristol, England.

Thanks to the grant I received from EESVO, I had a great opportunity to undergo a four-week externship at Rowe Veterinary Referrals in Bristol, England.

While I was there I met many wonderful people related to veterinary ophthalmology medicine.
I was taking part in numerous consultations of dogs, cats, and rabbits, referred from other general practices. Each patient there received a complete eye examination. In some cases, the eye ultrasound and gonioscopy were done, as an additional assessment during the consults.
The variety of cases was huge. Statistically, the most common cases were patients with non-healing corneal ulcers, suspected cataracts, and cases of glaucoma.
Due to the 24-hour character of this hospital, there were also some emergencies like e.g. corneal perforations.

Among the consultations, I participated in ophthalmic surgeries as an observer. I was able to see many CCTs on perforations and deep ulcers. Moreover, there were some well-accomplished phacoemulsification procedures, which were always preceded by a full pre-cataract assessment that included the gonioscopy, ERG, and ultrasonography.
Many post-op patients were hospitalized for a few days and were strictly monitored.
In addition, there were performed some less common operations like laser retinopexy, endocyclophotocoagulation, shunt implantation in glaucoma cases, parotid gland transposition, and ocular prosthesis surgeries.
I was lucky to see various surgical techniques and many of the above.
The perioperative care made a very good impression on me. The supporting team was highly well-organized and dedicated to all patients.

When the time allowed, we could discuss cases and exchange some clinical approaches or protocols, which was highly educative.

Once I was able to take part in their “Journal Club” while they discussed some of the ophthalmology publications. I assume this is a great concept to be constantly up-to-date with current knowledge.

To sum up I am very grateful to EESVO for receiving this grant and I also appreciate David Nutbrown-Hughes with the entire team for welcoming me in Rowe. I was able to enhance my skills in eye examination under the supervision of specialists. I have experienced a variety of complex cases managed with all the newest protocols and standards. Thanks to such an experience I could expand my horizons and become a more open-minded person. I had a great time and I consider this a significant step in my veterinary career. What is more, I also really liked Bristol city.

Bartłomiej Bielecki