Jago, a Yorkshire Terrier, was referred to Jon Wray, Head of Cardiology, when he was just 7 weeks old. Using a sophisticated cardiac ultrasound examination, Jon detected that the valve in the artery leading from Jago’s heart to his lungs had failed to open properly, causing dangerous pressure increases on the right side of the heart. Jon therefore had to inform Jago’s owners that, without complicated interventional surgery, his prognosis would be poor.
They were devastated at the prospect of losing their beloved pet at such a young age and wanted to do everything possible to give him the opportunity to live beyond puppyhood. Jon explained that the only hope would be to inflate a small ‘balloon catheter’ into the malformed valve.
Because Jago only weighed 1.4 kg, his condition was managed with medications until he was 6 months old and his weight had increased to 2.4 kg.
Over the course of 90 minutes, Jon and his colleague Domingo Casamian-Sorrosal performed the surgery through a small ‘keyhole’ approach into a peripheral vein.
Although our Cardiology Team has a lot of experience in this type of surgery, this was the smallest dog to undergo the procedure at our centre to date and is towards the lower limit of feasibility for interventional cardiology procedures. The operation required a large amount of planning.
Thanks to the expertise of our Cardiology, Anaesthesia and Nursing Teams, as well as the outstanding diagnostic and surgical facilities, the procedure was a complete success and the pressure build-up in Jago’s heart has been relieved. Thankfully, his prognosis is now very good and his owners are delighted.