News Releases, College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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News from the
College of Veterinary Medicine
University of Illinois
3225 Vet. Med. Basic Sciences Bldg.
2001 S. Lincoln Ave.
Urbana, IL 61802
October 5, 2011

Release on
Contact: Chris Beuoy

Black Lab and Owner Travel 650 Miles for Expert Care at University of Illinois

Editor's note: Roxy's successful follow-up visit on October 17 was covered by the News-Gazette.

Dr. Laurie Brewer, a veterinarian from Pennsylvania, has only owned Roxy for a few months, but she is devoted to finding the very best care for her dog. That's why she drove to Champaign over the weekend, seeking the services of Dr. Brendan McKiernan, Director of the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital and a leading expert in respiratory diseases of dogs.

Dr. Brewer adopted Roxy a couple of months ago after Roxy's owners were ready to euthanize the dog. Roxy has a nasty fungal infection, aspergillosis, which has been eating away her sinuses and nasal cavity. Dr. Brewer felt that Roxy was a sweet dog with good quality of life and wanted to give Roxy every chance.

Treatment for the infection by veterinary experts at The Ohio State University did not clear the infection, and doctors there were uncomfortable providing additional treatment because of the proximity of the infection to the brain.

Dr. Brewer consulted a number of veterinary sources and was pointed to Dr. McKiernan as the best in the field, so she and Roxy made the 700-mile trip over the weekend so he could perform a procedure he pioneered.

On Tuesday, Drs. McKiernan and Amy Kubier, a veterinarian in the third year of an internal medicine residency at the hospital, successfully performed a rhinoscopy to flush out diseased areas of the dog's sinus and apply a topical fungicide during a three and a half hour procedure. Roxy is up and doing well, and will return to her home in Pennsylvania tomorrow. They'll return later this month for a follow-up visit.

Dr. McKiernan is board certified in small animal internal medicine. He founded, and was the first president of, the Veterinary Comparative Respiratory Society. On faculty at the veterinary college in Illinois between 1974 and 1998, he returned as director of the Veterinary Teaching Hospital earlier this year after more than a dozen years in private specialty practice.