- Website Watch - X-Treme X-Rays: Imaging the    Emergency Patient 2004 - Website update - President’s Letter - History of AAVDI

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What’s in store for AAVDI 2005? Non-Cardiac Thoracic Imaging Saturday 7th May 2005 Sydney 10th Anniversary Meeting

Finally, a meeting dedicated to the thorax, and all of the non-cardiac problems that it throws our way! See the enclosed program for more details. Special topics will include looking at the benefits of alternate imaging, especially CT. This meeting represents the 10th anniversary of the formation of AAVDI.


AAVDI 2004 X-Treme X-Rays: Imaging the Emergency Patient.

AAVDI went West for the first time for the 9th Annual Meeting, X-Treme X-Rays: Imaging the Emergency Patient. The meeting was held in historic Fremantle on a gorgeous spring Sunday in early October, coordinated by Belinda Hopper from Murdoch University. Fifty one practitioners and students travelled from Perth, Bunbury, Geraldton, Melbourne, Brisbane Sydney to attend and participate in lively discussion. Special guest speaker for the day was Rob Nicoll, of Veterinary Imaging Associates in Sydney.  The meeting was sponsored by Medical Plus, which provides excellent ultrasound machines and support to Australian veterinarians, and represented by Andreas Winterhalter.

Zoė Lenard, the Resident in Diagnostic Imaging at Murdoch University, began the proceedings by reviewing the technical aspects of making diagnostic radiographs. She focussed particularly on the importance of positioning of the animal, and illustrated how poor positioning could lead to missed diagnoses. Rob Nicoll followed with a very entertaining and informative review of imaging musculoskeletal emergencies, incorporating when alternative imaging modalities like ultrasound, CT, MRI and nuclear medicine are appropriate. Nola Lester, a Diplomate of the American College of Radiology who is a Lecturer at Murdoch University, presented thoracic emergencies. She spoke at length about the dyspnoea, in particular, recognizing non-cardiogenic oedema, severe bronchial disease and pleural disease. Belinda Hopper, who became a Fellow of the Australian College in July this year, gave an entertaining presentation about imaging the acute abdomen, with an emphasis on recognizing serious intestinal disease.

The Esplanade Hotel, on the Harbour in Fremantle, provided the conference facilities and delegates ate an excellent seafood lunch, in order to prepare for the afternoon session of interactive case studies.

Katrin Swindells, the Resident in Critical Care at the Murdoch University Pet Emergency Centre, was the special guest for the afternoon session of case study presentations. Katrin gave an excellent review of some challenging cases from Murdoch, whilst Rob, Belinda, Nola and Zoe discussed imaging options and results for each case. Katrin commented on the treatment options for these cases, ranging from inhaled grass seeds, to chronic intestinal obstructions and hepatic abscessation.

The annual general meeting followed; Belinda Hopper was elected President, Zoė Lenard Secretary and Robert Nicoll the Treasurer. The 10th Anniversary AAVDI meeting, scheduled for early 2005, was discussed.

At the end of a hard day’s imaging, delegates gathered in the Bar at the Esplanade Hotel for a well deserved drink, courtesy of the sponsors Medical Imaging.

Many thanks to Belinda Hopper, for organizing an outstanding meeting, as well as to all of the speakers for their involvement. And a big thank you to all of the participants, who demonstrated that the West is keen to remain involved in AAVDI meetings.

Website Update:

Website  nerds amongst the membership may have noticed that the AAVDI site is looking a little tired and out of date. While the internet is a wonderful thing that can provide hours of entertainment, maintaining a website is not always such good fun. But we are working to improve the website, so watch this space. A new, revamped site should be functional within a couple of months. We will be moving into the brave new world of a paperless news letter! Further, case studies will be accessible (past and present) will be accessible, and the images will be able to be interpreted! If you have any ideas or requests for the website, please email Zoe on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or Rob on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


A Brief History of AAVDI

AAVDI was conceived by Paul Mahoney in 1995 who, at the time had a connection to EAVDI, the European Association of Veterinary Diagnostic Imaging. The concept was to create a southern hemispheric version of EAVDI and have an annual conference for radiologists and interested veterinarians. AAVDI aimed to be an independent, vibrant organisation, thus it was not associated with the Australian College of Veterinary Scientists.

A committee of three was formed by Graeme Allen, Andrew Wood and Paul to get AAVDI off the ground. This involved drafting a constitution and forming a legal entity. After a few hiccups, the Department of Fair Trading assisted the committee in creating a solid foundation. AAVDI  aimed to provide professional stimulation and learning for veterinarians, whether they are general practitioners or specialists. The inaugural meeting was held in Sydney in (date and place and topic). It was a raging success, with interest from local veterinarians. Graeme was installed as the inaugural president. AAVDI was Sydney based for the first 6 or so years, but a deliberate decision was made to attempt to involve non-Sydney members in the committee, in an attempt to spread the administrative load. A new committee is now elected annually. This had lead to meetings being held in Melbourne, Brisbane, New Zealand, Scone, and recently Perth. Obviously the annual activities of the organization are only as fruitful as the efforts expended by the various elected committees. In a relatively small imaging community, there is not a lot of room for sleepers. If the same individuals are left to run AAVDI year after year, the motivation for organising stimulating meetings declines. Fortunately there has been a diverse program of meetings over the last decade, in various locations, which has exposed many practitioners to the benefits of AAVDI. Greg Daniels from Tennessee visited in 1998 for a nuclear scintigraphy meeting, Kathy Spaulding from North Carolina State University visited in 1999 for the Abdominal Sonography meeting, and other meeting topics have included cardiology (2002), Emergency medicine (2004). There have been strong attendances from local practitioners at each meeting, which supports the founding principles that vets on the ground want access to more knowledge about imaging.

With increasing access to continuing education there are increasing numbers of practitioners who are evolving their imaging skills. This is reflected by the numbers of people who have done the Diagnostic Imaging and Sonology Distance Education programs, run by the PGF, or the Murdoch Masters program. These people need a forum to continue to practice and interact with imaging, and AAVDI is there to support this interaction.  So what does the future hold for AAVDI? An organization is only as good as the committee who runs it, and as the committee is drawn from the members, member participation is vital. Graeme Allan believes that AAVDI should remember that these are the people who AAVDI was established for, and to forget them means that the organization may become irrelevant. When given the choice of regular regional meetings or a larger, stronger meet, he would prefer the latter, where an international speaker is invited to Australia. Others in the organization seem keen to pursue the annual regional meetings, which have been quite successful in the last few years. Fortunately, as a democratic organization, the direction that AAVDI takes in future is completely up to the members. If you would rather one format over another, then get involved!

2005 represents the 10th anniversary of the inauguration of AAVDI. It is appropriate that the meeting be held in Sydney. The topic is Non-Cardiac Thoracic Imaging, which is a highly topical and relevant field, and there will be a great deal to talk about. If you have colleagues that have an imaging bent, or that feel that they need to improve their film reading, then this is the meeting for them!




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