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Duncan Uses 3D Printing to Help Dog

Vet Duncan Barnes helps fix a poodle's leg using 3D printing

Eastcott is unique in having both a very strong first opinion (GP) veterinary group and a specialist referral (consultant) group all under the same roof so that, if the need arises, you can be confident that your pets will receive the best possible care without the inconvenience and stress of having to transport your pet.

Duncan was asked to treat a 9 year old miniature poodle with a very painful shoulder. The joint was prone to slipping in and out of joint, causing it a good deal of pain.  

After a thorough examination and a CT scan, Duncan decided that the best way to help was to perform a shoulder arthrodesis - this is when the joint is surgically fused to prevent movement. Arthrodesis offers joint stability and subsequently pain reduction. The surgical procedure has to be performed skillfully as whilst the joint needs to be fused, the patient has to be able to continue to use the leg effectively. Duncan used the CT images and arranged for 2 3D printed copies of the dog's leg to be produced. 

Duncan then used one model to rehearse the surgery. He was able to precisely contour the plate prior to surgery and check the movement within the joint without risk to the patient and a lengthy anaesthetic. The subsequent surgery time was much reduced and the Duncan was able to slip the pre prepared plate in place without complication. 

bone model created from the CT scan         bone model created from the CT scan

Bone model created from the CT scan                                   A  second model used to rehearse the surgery and                                                                                                                                     contour the plate appropriately

radiographs of the arthrodesed shoulder 6 weeks after surgery     radiographs of the arthrodesed shoulder 6 weeks after surgery

X-rays of the arthrodesis shoulder 8 weeks after surgery. The little dog was able to walk comfortably within a few short weeks without pain relief.


Duncan has a special interest in orthopaedic cases. He was awarded the RCVS certificate of small animal surgery (CertSAS) in 2006 and is currently studying towards the RCVS diploma in small animal orthopaedic surgery (DSAS (O). Duncan sees Eastcott patients and also cases referred to him by other vets. Duncan is particularly interested in fracture repair and the use of CT in the diagnosis of orthopaedic disease. Duncan' orthopaedic blog show some of the interesting cases that he treats *warning graphic images*

Duncan Barnes

Duncan & Able

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Eastcott Veterinary Clinic & Hospital
Edison Business Park
Hindle Way, Off Dorcan Way,

Telephone: 01793 528341