Tools of the trade: AESCULAP Caiman

by Dr Sam Kovac, Southern Cross Veterinary Clinic, St Peters, NSW

The Caiman is an electrosurgical device that seals blood vessels and tissue as you operate. I insist that the unit is plugged in and ready to go before I start any soft tissue surgery. It has dramatically changed the way I operate.

What’s good about it

We don’t do traditional spays anymore; we only use the keyhole method. The Caiman is the single most important piece of equipment during the procedure. The instrument is inserted into the port, grasps the ovary and it seals and cuts beautifully. It’s then a simple matter to remove that piece of the anatomy.

The Caiman makes the whole procedure much faster. A laparoscopic desexing can be completed in 15 minutes.

It’s also useful for tumour removals and splenectomies. I can remove a spleen and seal the blood vessels in about five minutes. Using conventional methods, I’d need to tie 30 to 40 ligatures to seal the blood vessels and if one of those slip, it will haemorrhage into the body. I also use it for intestinal resections and most cancer surgery. I’m convinced that the Caiman has improved patient safety.

I’ve used other similar instruments but I believe the Caiman is a superior product. It has a longer reach, is very fast and, as there’s less thermal spread, it doesn’t damage organs.

It’s an impeccable piece of equipment that should be in every veterinary surgery. It’s better for the patient, better for the vet, and better for the practice. The Caiman is everything I want in an electrosurgical device.

What’s not so good

The only negative is that the instrument can’t be re-used. It’s very expensive and has to be thrown away after each surgery. They can’t be sterilised as the plastic parts would melt in the autoclave.

Where did you get it

Austvet Endoscopy

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