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University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital                                                                   May 2016

 Ginger Passalacqua
 Ginger Passalacqua, Referral Coordinator

With new leadership often comes other new things. For our dermatology service it not only has a relatively new leader, Dr. Jason Pieper, but it also has a new name: Dermatology and Otology Clinic.

The goal in changing the name of the service is twofold. One, Dr. Pieper wants the referral population to remember that he’s passionate about treating ear problems. Two, he wants everyone to know that there are other options such as deep ear cleaning, biopsies, and laser ablation through video otoscopy.

So call for an appointment or call to consult because his knowledge is more than skin deep! 

Contact me if you would like to schedule a visit at your clinic with one of our veterinary specialists.

 Dr. Jason Pieper with dog

What You and Your Staff Need to Know about Staph

Staphylococcus can be a very common cause of infection of the skin and ears of all animals and humans. Staphylococcus is divided into coagulase positive and coagulase negative species. Coagulase positive species—S. pseudintermedius, S. aureus, and S. schleiferi subspecies coagulans—are more commonly seen; however, coagulase negative species are identified in infections with growing frequency. S. pseudintermedius is the most common commensal organism in dogs and cats and, subsequently, the most common isolate from canine superficial pyoderma. Staphylococcus sp. infections may also cause pneumonia, urinary tract infections, soft tissue infections, surgical site infections, ocular infections, and endocarditis.

Continue reading online to learn more about staph and methicillin resistance.



ear canal

Dealing with the Painful and Irritating Chronic Otitis Externa Cases

Ear infections (otitis externa) in dogs were the most common reason for veterinary visits in 2015, according to Veterinary Pet Insurance. The second most common reason for visits was skin allergies, which is a common primary cause of otitis externa. Otitis externa can be extremely frustrating for owners and veterinarians alike, especially in the case of chronic otitis externa. Fortunately, there are several new otic formulations available to help with infectious otitis externa and also with owner compliance.

Continue reading online to learn more about ear infections.



Staff Spotlight: Sandy Grable, CVT


Grable and Zeus

Sandy Grable, CVT, has been working as the sole dermatology technician since 2001. She graduated from Parkland College’s veterinary technology program in 1999 and began working at the U of I Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory. When one of her English mastiffs was diagnosed with atopy and food allergies by Dr. Karen Campbell, that’s when her interest in dermatology began and she was able to transfer to the dermatology service in the hospital.

Prior to her career as a certified veterinary technician, Sandy was a musical ambassador for the United States Air Force and has traveled to numerous countries playing for audiences of tens of thousands and Heads of State. Sandy played clarinet, sax, and bagpipes, to name a few. She is originally from Davenport, Iowa, but when she and her husband retired from the military, they decided to settle in central Illinois.

Continue reading online to learn more about Sandy Grable.



New Doctors to Join Hospital by Early Fall

Jordan Vitt received his bachelor’s degree (2006) and DVM (2011) from Ohio State University. He completed an internship at the Matthew J. Ryan Veterinary Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in 2012 before beginning his residency at Texas A&M.

Efa Llewellyn is a 2010 graduate of Royal Veterinary College, London. She spent two years in private practice in the United Kingdom and completed a small animal rotating internship at the Royal Veterinary College before entering a residency in small animal emergency and critical care medicine at the University of Minnesota. She is interested in the acute management of the polytrauma patient, sepsis, and management of the coagulopathy patient.

Kari Foss is a 2008 University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine graduate. She has been working at MedVet Medical & Cancer Centers for Pets in Ohio since 2012. Her interests include treatment of autoimmune inflammatory brain diseases, spinal cord diseases including intervertebral disc disease, and trauma and surgical treatment of cervical spondylomyelopathy.

Katie Smith is a 2010 University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine graduate. She completed an internship at Peterson & Smith Equine Hospital in Florida. Then she began her combined PhD and ophthalmology residency program at Oklahoma State University. She is interested in the treatment of fungal corneal infection in horses. She has already successfully defended her PhD.


Radiology Update 

You may have heard that our imaging service is undergoing a transition period. All in-house cases will continue to be able to be imaged via all of our modalities, and all images will continue to be read by board-certified radiologists. During blocks of time in this transition period, we will be using the human health delivery model where technicians take the images that are then read off-site by board-certified radiologists.

We greatly appreciate the trust you have placed in us in allowing us to service the imaging needs of your patients over the past several years through outpatient imaging. At this time, we unfortunately will be discontinuing outpatient ultrasound and outpatient CT as of May 20, 2016.

We will continue to provide consultations on radiographs. As always, ultrasounds and CTs will be available to patients evaluated through one of our many specialty areas. We look forward to being able to reopen outpatient services in the near future.


Wilkins Named Associate Editor

Dr. Pamela Wilkins, veterinary clinical medicine, has been named associate editor of Equine Veterinary Education, a journal published by the British Equine Veterinary Association and the American Association of Equine Practitioners, which carries practical, peer-reviewed educational articles on diagnosis and treatment for equine veterinary clinicians.


Save the Date for Fall Conference: September 22-23

At our 2016 Fall Conference, look for expanded food animal and equine offerings, a Wellness in the Workplace session, more alumni speakers, the Marching Illini Drumline, additional opportunities for social interaction at the Thursday dinner, and opening keynote speaker Jeanne Malnati. Jeanne is an expert in interpersonal and relationship dynamics. Her experience with her family’s business, Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria, combined with her background as a psychotherapist, generates perspectives and insights of tremendous value.



In the April issue, we used a stock photo of a parrot that had jesses on one foot. We don’t advocate these tethers for pet birds in our clinic. We regret the error.