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SAIM504-1003: Feline GI Disease: What's Eating our Cats? Module A

INSTRUCTORS:
Michele Gaspar, DVM, DABVP (Feline)
Laura K. Andrews, DVM, DACVP
Katharine F. Lunn BVMS, MS, PhD, MRCVS, DACVIM

DATES:
October 15 � November 26th, 2003
Interactive Sessions: Wednesday; 9:30 - 11:30 PM ET (USA)

Course Description
Feline gastrointestinal disease represents a significant component of small animal clinical practice. Clinicians commonly evaluate feline patients with one or more clinical signs and symptoms that may represent disorders of the esophagus, stomach, intestines and pancreas.

Upon completion of this course, the clinician will:

  1. Understand the normal structure and function of the feline GI system, mucosal immunity, as well as factors (congenital and acquired) that may contribute to abnormal structure and function and loss of normal mucosal integrity;
  2. Be able to evaluate patient signs, in order to more accurately focus on the potential area(s) of concern;
  3. Utilize readily available as well as advanced diagnostic tests and interpret them correctly;
  4. Choose the most appropriate diagnostic tests for each patient, be able to interpret the selected tests and formulate a rationale treatment plan
  5. Understand the principles of biopsy and histopathology, as it relates to feline gastrointestinal disease
  6. Gain an understanding of the histopathological findings common in feline GI disease and be able to relate them to clinical cases and presentations
  7. Formulate additional treatment plans and diagnostics, based upon each patient's initial response to therapy.
COURSE OUTLINE

Week 1: Dr. Michele Gaspar
Overview of the Feline Gastrointestinal System
The first week will present the unique structure and function of the feline gastrointestinal system, including the esophagus, stomach, small and large intestines and pancreas. Normal structure and function, as well as congenital and acquired disorders will be reviewed. Additionally, mucosal immunity will be discussed, both from a veterinary and comparative (human) medicine perspective, as well as factors that may contribute to loss of mucosal integrity.

Week 2: Dr. Michele Gaspar
Manifestations of Gastrointestinal Disease
The second week will address common, as well as unusual, manifestations of feline gastrointestinal disease, utilizing multiple patient case examples. Clinical questioning/history-taking and examination findings will be reviewed, so that the practitioner has a firm foundation on obtaining information that supports , or refutes, gastrointestinal issues in cats.

Week 3: Dr. Kathy Lunn
Diagnostic Tests
This week will consider diagnostic tests that are useful in the detection of feline GI disease, from the minimum data base to advanced modalities. Since appropriate test selection is critical in correctly diagnosing patients, the advantages and disadvantages of multiple diagnostic tests will be reviewed. Patient case studies will be used to illustrate test selection and interpretation.

Week 4: Dr. Laura Andrews
Gastrointestinal Histopathology
Accurate biopsy technique is crucial to correct patient diagnostics. This week will not only focus on proper techniques to enhance diagnosis, but also will review how gastrointestinal histopathology enables the clinician to assess disease states and prognosis. Multiple histopathology slides will be reviewed which will illustrate various forms of gastrointestinal disease, including IBD, lymphoma, Helicobacteriosis, gastritis, laminar fibrosis, parasitic infections, mastocytosis and pancreatic disorders. Interpretation of histopathology, the best ways to obtain, preserve and handle biopsy speciments, the use of "second opinions," and questions to ask when consulting with a pathologist will be covered as well. The special challenges of biopsies obtained via endoscopic, laproscopic, surgical and fine-needle guided routes will be reviewed.

Week 5: Dr. Kathy Lunn
Principles of Gastrointestinal Therapeutics
This week will review the large number of therapeutics available to treat feline gastrointestinal disease. In addition to helping the clinician formulate rational, safe treatment plans for each patient, mechanisms of action and indications for some of the newer therapeutics also will be covered. Acute and chronic therapeutic strategies will be discussed.

Week 6: Dr. Laura Andrews/Dr. Michele Gaspar/Dr. Kathy Lunn
Specific Disease Entities in Feline GI Disease
This week will focus on four specific examples of feline GI disease and will summarize the previous weeks' information. Cases selected will illustrate proper patient examination and diagnostic testing, histopathology and therapeutics.

MESSAGE BOARD DISCUSSIONS:
Discussions will begin on the start date of the course and will continue for 7 days following the real time session.

CE HOURS: 12 CE Credits

TUITION:
Member/$173, Non-Member/$245 before October 1st ,
Member/$192, Non-Member/$272 after October 1st , 2003;

For More Information on VIN's Upcoming CE Courses, check out http://www.VIN.com/CE/Catalog.htm

Note: "This course has been submitted (but not yet approved) for 12 hours of continuing education credits in jurisdictions which recognize AAVSB's RACE approval; however participants should be aware that some boards have limitations on the number of hours accepted in certain categories and/or restrictions on certain methods of delivery of continuing education. Call VIN for further information."

(Attendees are encouraged to check with their licensing jurisdiction(s) for information regarding recognition by the board.)


COURSE WITHDRAWAL AND REFUND POLICY: Withdrawal prior to the listed start date of a course entitles the registrant to a complete refund or a credit toward a future VIN CE course, whichever is preferred. Withdrawal within 1 week after the listed start date (i.e. including no more than one real-time session) entitles the registrant to a credit toward any future VIN CE course. (Does not apply to courses with only one real-time session.) After the first real-time session, a registrant may withdraw due to special circumstances and receive prorated credit towards a future VIN course. These requests will be handled on an individual basis. The amount of the prorated credit will be determined based on 65% of the time remaining in the course at the time of withdrawal. It is not possible to withdraw retroactively.

Note: To ensure rapid handling of your request for withdrawal, we recommend that you call the VIN office at 1-800-700-INFO.


Debbie Friedler
Coordinator
Continual Education Division
Veterinary Information Network
CEonVIN@vin.com

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