Day 3 Japan

I woke up this morning and was excited to see what we would be involved with today at Dr. Kimata’s Hospital.  I always look forward to the hard cases, the ones no one else likes to do, and today I saw that Dr. Kimata’s hospital and staff are willing to do the same.  From the basic cat abscess, to the broken legs, each case is given a thorough exam and treated as if they were the only patient there to be concerned with for that moment.  Doctors worked with techs and assistants with great teamwork and respect, questions and discussions were held on cases that were in the hospital, and patients needs were attended too around the hours like a well oiled machine.

Technicians rotate on shifts that allow one to be here from seven until midnight each day. All treatments are closely monitored and documented as well as physical conditions and status.  Japanese technicians are trained in grooming techniques too.  This allows for some pets to be cut nicely post surgery, or to help with treatment of certain medical conditions.  We all feel better when we look better!  I went to lunch today with several of the staff and was delighted to try boiled fish and miso soup.  Will look for that back in the states and enjoyed the great conversations over green tea.

As the day progresses, preparations were made for this afternoons surgery on a small breed dog for cervical instability including C6-C7.  These vertebrae are right at the thoracic inlet and all structures must be identified and preserved, which is no easy task in such a small hole.  With all team members aware of their roles, Dr. Kimata prepared his patient and jumped right in.  Time and speed was not a concern, the patients’ outcome and quality of life was the focus.  Three veterinarians, and one technician made it all happen.  Using 4 screws, wire, and bone cement from Zimmer with their vacuum mixing system, Dr. Kimata secured the vertebrae, burred off any sharp edges, made a slope for the esophagus in the cement, and did a multilayer closure.  He made it look like a piece of cake.  His skill is undeniably top notch.  So is his team, and his facility.  That is why so many pets are referred here daily from around Hamamatsu and Japan.  His reputation is paramount and I would agree.  An hour later, our patient was standing and wanting to go home.  Not yet little buddy.

Dinner time came and Dr. Kimata invited me to go back home with him to enjoy a traditional Japanese dinner with his wife, daughter, and several members of his staff.  What a great time.  Making sushi rolls individually from all different options of fish, meat, rice, vegetables, and pickles was a lot of fun.  Japanese beer tasting went well and Dr. Kimata and I had a common discussion on how great BMW cars are for driving.  Even with my poor Japanese, we managed to talk to almost 11:30 and were surprised at the hour when we decided it was time to call it a night.  Thanks to all for such a wonderful evening. Kimata2Kimata3Surgery1

surgery2Kimata1

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