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Flex XC Ureteroscope

Equipment: Flex XC Ureteroscope

Estimated cost: Estimated cost for a new ureteroscope with processor – $40,000.  Please see the attached quote (items 6 and 15) from Storz for this equipment.  A new processor would need to be purchased as our current Storz processor for the rigid scopes will not work for this flexible scope.  This new processor allows for HD image capability with the appropriate monitor.

Ongoing upkeep costs: Ancillary equipment that will need to be purchased include biopsy forceps and stone retrieval baskets that can be used through the working channel of this scope.  The cost of these items will be less than $1,500.

Faculty member: Dr. Elisabeth Snead

Service: Small animal medicine.

Proposed use: This is a very small endoscope that can be used to examine the urethra of male dogs and small female dogs. Currently we do not have a scope that is small enough to be able to go up a male dog urethra which limits our diagnostic capabilities for diagnosing and treating disorders of the male urethra and urinary bladder.

This scope can also be used to perform a procedure called laser lithotripsy where a laser fiber is inserted through the working channel of this scope and used to bust up a bladder stone into very small fragments.  This is a great alternative to an invasive surgery for treating bladder stones.

This scope — with the laser fiber — could also be used to non-surgically treat ectopic ureters in female and male dogs.  This is a condition where animals are born with abnormal urinary plumbing and leak urine intermittently or persistently.  The Flex XC ureteroscope from Storz is one of the best flexible ureteroscopes on the market currently.

Benefits to the WVCM Veterinary Medical Centre include the following:

  • It would allow us to offer a much less invasive means compared to surgery to remove bladder stones from the urethra and bladder of male and female dogs.
  • Potential to increase our referral medicine caseload and increase cases for teaching students. We would be only one of two facilities in Western Canada to offer this procedure.
  • It would help us attract residents to the internal medicine service. This would allow us to be more competitive with other schools currently offering this service and exposing their internal medicine residents to this procedure.
  • Increased potential for research in endourology. Lithotripsy is a new and exploding area in veterinary internal medicine. Dr. Lulich at the University of Minnesota has expressed interest in collaborating with our WCVM research team on some bladder stone research which would involve the Canadian Light Source’s synchrotron. Once the current academic year is over, Dr. Snead will begin spending time with the human urology service at the U of S to continue her training in endourologic procedures by observing and then performing lithotripsy and many other endourology procedures in people.
  • Increased anesthetic and imaging procedures (double contrast urethrogram and epidural procedures) for training students, interns and residents in these ancillary services.

For more information, please view the Storz brochure (Flex XC Ureteroscope).