Meet the HLA Teams

General Diagnostic and Surgical Service
LAX Group 002 C(L-R: Dr. Thomas Jenei, Dr. Amanda Bergren, veterinary technician Katie Calicchio, Dr. Deanna Gazzerro and Dr. Carl Kirker-Head.)

Board certified surgeons, Dr. Thomas Jenei and Dr. Carl Kirker-Head, lead the General Diagnostic and Surgical Service, which oversees many varieties of cases and offers all types of diagnostic procedures—from nerve blocks to tissue biopsy to CT and MRI—as well as performs surgery. This includes procedures required for horses, camelids, and farm animals, including orthopedic surgery, lameness, wound repair, septic joint management, gastrointestinal surgery, and urogenital procedures. A podiatry specialty medicine and surgery service is also provided by Dr. Kirker-Head, who works in collaboration with farriers in the region, and Dr. Bryan Fraley from Hagyard Equine Medical Institute.

All surgery is performed by the faculty surgeon, with assistance of a surgical house officer who is also a graduate veterinarian. Caregivers include a knowledgeable team of technicians, senior veterinary students, house officers, and attending faculty. Using this team approach Tufts Hospital for Large Animals at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine is able to provide 24-hour quality care.

Internal Medicine Service
int mED 002 a
(L-R: Veterinary technician Emily von Gal, Dr. Melissa Mazan, Dr. Daniela Bedenice, Dr. Nicholas Frank, Dr. Mary Rose Paradis and veterinary technician Maggie Underwood.)

The Internal Medicine Service works hand-in-hand with board certified, on-site radiologists, pathologists, ophthalmologists, cardiologists, and dermatologists to offer the best possible care under one roof in diagnostics, therapeutics, and intensive care management for large animals. Dr. Mary Rose Paradis, Dr. Daniela Bedenice, Dr. Melissa Mazan, and Dr. Nick Frank run this service, and are all board certified in Internal Medicine. In addition, Dr. Bedenice is the only board-certified specialist in Large Animal Emergency and Critical Care in New England. Patient care is enhanced by the help of the hospital’s outstanding technical staff and the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University’s eager, knowledgeable, and compassionate students.

Tufts Hospital for Large Animals offers 24-hour service for emergencies; and when routine diagnostics and treatments have not solved an animal’s problem, the clinicians’ expertise, sophisticated diagnostics, imaging, and cutting-edge therapeutics are available by appointment.

Equine Sports Medicine and Surgical Service
SMED HLA 001(L-R: Veterinary assistant Laurie Gendron, veterinary technician Darlene Staplins, Dr. José Garcia-Lopez, veterinary technician Kelly McMahon and Dr. Kirstin Bubeck.)

The Equine Sports Medicine and Surgical Service is operated by two clinicians, Dr. José M. García-López and Dr. Kirstin Bubeck, both Diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS) and American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation (ACVSMR).

The service focuses on offering the evaluation and management of conditions affecting the performance of equine athletes, including lameness examination, advanced imaging (Nuclear Medicine, MRI, and CT), orthopedic surgery (including arthroscopy and fracture repair), and upper respiratory evaluation (resting and dynamic endoscopy) and surgery (tie back, tie forward, DDSP, etc.).

The Equine Sports Medicine and Surgical Service prides itself on its fast-track outpatient and inpatient appointments for sport horse medicine and surgery. This new division operates closely with the Ultrasound Service, and consultations with the Diagnostic Imaging, Internal Medicine, Cardiology, Dermatology, Ophthalmology, and Theriogenology services are also coordinated.

Ultrasound Service
Pick 003
(L-R: Dr. Wade Tenney, Dr. Kate Chope and veterinary assistant Erin Synnott.)

The newly re-established Ultrasound Service is led by Dr. Wade Tenney and Dr. Kate Chope, and supports all Tufts Hospital for Large Animals at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine services and referring veterinarians in the region. Service includes imaging with the most recently developed Toshiba APL10 300 Ultrasound Imaging System, ultrasound-guided biopsy, tendon and joint imaging, and intra-lesional injection of stem cells.

“Ultrasound-only” appointments allow the clinicians to work directly with referrers as a team of health care providers for patients. This program applies to cases that have already been worked up and require an ultrasound of a specific area of interest. The patients are admitted directly to ultrasound for in-and-out appointments. Following the exam, the results are relayed directly to referring veterinarians so that they, combined with the clients, can decide on the best course of action for the patient.

Clinicians and Staff

This Month’s Guest Editors

Dr. Carl Kirker-Head
Carl Kirker-Head

Dr. Carl Kirker-Head, Associate Professor of Clinical Sciences

Dr. Kirker-Head is the Marilyn M. Simpson Professor and Associate Professor of Surgery at Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. He is also Director of the Orthopaedic Research Laboratory and an Adjunct Associate Professor in Tufts Department of Bio-Engineering. He is a Faculty Fellow at Tufts Center for Animals and Public Policy.  Dr. Kirker-Head graduated from the University of Cambridge, England in 1983 and completed his surgery residency at Tufts University in 1987, since which time he has been on faculty.  He is a Diplomate of the American and European Colleges of Veterinary Surgeons and he sits on the Academic Council and Board of Trustees of the AO Foundation. He and his wife own and operate an equine rehabilitation facility at their horse farm in Sturbridge, Massachusetts.

Dr. Nicholas Frank

Dr. Nicholas Frank, Chair of the Department of Clinical Sciences

Dr. Nicholas Frank

Dr. Nicholas Frank recently joined the faculty at Tufts University as Professor of Large Animal Internal Medicine and Chair of the Department of Clinical Sciences. Dr. Frank is a recognized expert in the areas of equine endocrine disorders, laminitis, geriatric medicine, nutrition, and internal medicine.  He comes to us from the University of Tennessee where he was a clinician and researcher, as well as Section Chief of Large Animal Medicine and Director of the Center for Equine Veterinary Research.  Research performed by Dr. Frank and his group helped to describe Equine Metabolic Syndrome and to assess medical treatments for this condition in horses. Dr. Frank will provide medicine consultations for the equine podiatry center and referring veterinarians.