D. Scott Taylor DVM, Diplomate ACVS
Dr. Taylor completed a residency in Equine surgery and lameness at the University of California at Davis in 1993. UC-Davis’ veterinary school is one of the most prestigious veterinary training centers in the world, and Dr. Taylor felt very blessed to receive his training there. While there, he was able to train under some of the true pioneers of modern day equine surgery and lameness, including Drs. J.D. Wheat, Dennis Meagher, John Pascoe, and Jack Snyder. These teachers instilled in him a passion for helping the horse AND the horse owner.
Since 1993 Dr. Taylor has built upon the education he received at UC Davis by using the state of the art diagnostics available at Arizona Equine to learn much more about how to help horses with lameness or surgical problems. Any medical professional will testify that the experience of the doctor is the most important factor when determining a course of action for a given problem, and Dr. Taylor has about 24 years experience in Equine sports medicine and surgery.
Over the past 20 years, many advancements have been made in equine medicine and surgery. A short list of some of these includes Nuclear Scintigraphy (bone scans), MRI (standing and anesthetized), Laser surgery, Regenerative therapies (including IRAP, Stem Cells, Platelet Rich Plasma), and advanced ultrasound imaging techniques. Dr. Taylor and his partners are experts in the use of all of these techniques. Arizona Equine was one of the first few private equine clinics in the United States to install and use Nuclear Scintigraphy and standing MRI (http://www.hallmarq.net/). It is a priority of Dr. Taylor’s to keep up with all of the latest advancements in equine surgery and sports medicine.
Dr. Taylor is a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (http:// www.acvs.org/). What does this mean? This means that he is a recognized specialist in veterinary surgery. Diplomate status is not easy to obtain, and requires the following: 1)Completion of a year-long internship program after graduation from veterinary school, 2)
Completion of a three year, highly structured, residency program, and 3) Passing a rigorous multi-day comprehensive examination given by established experts in the veterinary surgical field. Like most veterinarians, Dr. Taylor spent 8 years in college obtaining his DVM degree. To become a specialist in surgery he completed an extra additional 4 years in postgraduate training. Board certification ensures that the horse owner using one of the best- trained surgeons possible to treat their horse.
What is sport’s medicine? This broad term includes everything related to the diagnosis and treatment of sports related injuries. An equine sports medicine specialist has expertise in many different areas, including, but not limited to: lameness diagnosis; radiology; ultrasonography; interpreting nuclear scintigraphy and MRI results; joint and soft tissue injections; regenerative therapies (IRAP, PRP, Stem Cells); and surgical intervention. Dr. Taylor became proficient in many of these areas during his internship and residency training. Sports medicine is continually evolving, however, and Dr. Taylor invests in continuing education to keep abreast of newer techniques. Dr. Taylor spends about 75% of his time practicing equine sports medicine.
Dr. Taylor obtained the first of many horses when he was nine years old. He competed competitively in gymkhana’s for 4-5 years, and has ridden for pleasure every since then. He has owned horses for most of his life. Winston Churchill once said, “There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man”. Dr. Taylor has found that to be true, which is why he chose a profession that lets him spend so much time with horses. He has devoted many years of his life to learning everything he can to help horses and their humans.
Dr. Taylor approaches each case with several things in mind:
1) What does the client need?
In almost all cases, the answer to this question is that the client needs him to help return their horse to soundness and health. To determine the client’s needs, Dr. Taylor does several things, including LISTENING to the horse owner, LISTENING more, and then he LISTENS even more; and then he asks questions to make sure that he understands what the client is saying. In some cases, this is a two-minute conversation, and in others it is an hour-long conversation. Dr. Taylor feels that if the client has unanswered questions at the end of a case then he has failed to listen enough.
2) How can we best satisfy the client needs with our experience and knowledge?
The answer to this question is usually that we need to diagnose and treat the problem in the least invasive and most economical way possible. Due to the cost of medical equipment and supplies, veterinary care is expensive. It is more important than ever that we use the appropriate tools to diagnose and treat our patients. Veterinarians and their clients should always be aware of the cost/benefit ratio of both diagnostic tests and treatments. Dr. Taylor feels it is very important to choose diagnostics and treatments wisely. The most expensive option is not always the best option.
3) How can we best educate the client about the process of diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis for their horse?
This is always a three-step process of communicating to the client, listening to the client’s response, and then clarifying any misunderstandings. This has to happen at every stage of the process, so the client knows what is going on at all times. We are also careful to write clear discharge instructions that summarize the case and clearly articulate what the client needs to do for aftercare and rehabilitation.
Dr. Taylor feels that these are the two most important qualities of any veterinarian. The ethical duty of a veterinarian REQUIRES that they are honest with their clients at all times and that they hold the highest ethical standards. Thankfully, almost all veterinarians adhere by this belief. It is sometimes difficult to give a client an honest answer about their horse’s problem if it is bad news, but Dr. Taylor will do it in the gentlest way possible, and will do his best to explain it to the client’s satisfaction. Doing his job honestly and ethically is very important to Dr. Taylor.
Dr. Taylor is married to the love of his life, Patti, and they have five beautiful children. Dr. Taylor puts a priority on his life away from work and he and his partners have structured their call schedule to ensure that they all have ample family time. Dr. Taylor and his family are active in their church, and enjoy getting together with friends and family as often as possible.