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Maryland Dog Magazine

SPECIALIST SPOTLIGHT: Krista L. Evans, DVM, CCRT Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Surgeons – Chesapeake Veterinary Surgical Specialist

Jun 13, 2019 12:33PM ● By Sharon Scholze
This issue we spotlight Krista Evans, DVM, CCRT Diplomate, American College of Veterinary Surgeons. Dr. Evans is the chief of Surgery and the managing member of CVRC. Dr. Evans specializes in surgery and is a certified canine rehabilitation therapist (CCRT), Dr. Evans developed the rehabilitation program at Chesapeake Veterinary Surgical Specialists (CVSS).

 Dr. Evans grew up locally on the Eastern Shore in Salisbury, Maryland. She attended the University of Georgia and obtained her Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture. She elected to remain in Georgia to attend the University of Georgia College of Veterinary Medicine, where she also met her husband, Dr. Joe Prostredny. Dr. Evans then completed a one-year small animal internship at the Purdue University. Seeking more surgical experience she interned at the Tennessee Avenue Animal Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio. Upon completion of her surgical internship Dr. Evans accepted a surgical residency at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine which concluded in 1993. In 1994 Dr. Evans became a Diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS) after passing all divisions of the certifying examination.

 Dr. Evans is active in local and national professional organizations. Locally she has served as president of the Anne Arundel Veterinary County Association (AAVMA) and the Maryland Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA). Nationally she has served on the Board of The Veterinary Orthopedic Society (VOS). She has served on multiple committees for the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS), including residency and strategic planning committees, the nominating and awards committee and most recently on the Residency Program Credentialing Committee.

We sat down with Dr. Evans for a Q&A to share how she got started in the industry and CVSS.

When did you know you wanted to work in the veterinary industry?
I decided I wanted to be a veterinarian when I started high school in ninth grade. I had always loved animals, and felt that being a veterinarian would allow me to enjoy my job and fulfill my desire to help animals.

What made you want to go into surgery and rehabilitation therapy?
I decided my senior year of Veterinary School that I wanted to be a surgeon. The thrill of scrubbing in on surgeries and helping animals with orthopedic and neurological disease was very appealing to me as a senior student rotating through surgery. In 2006, it became evident to me that CVSS’s surgical program was lacking rehabilitation after breaking my collar bone in a horseback riding accident and having physical therapy myself. The CVSS’s staff surgeons had been sending our patients to other locations for rehabilitation, but after my own experience with rehab, I wanted CVSS to have its own program. Two of our technicians and I entered the CRI program in 2007 and became certified in 2008. 

The specialty field in veterinary medicine continues to grow, in what areas do you see it continuing to expand in the future? 
There definitely continues to be increased specialization in the veterinary field. I do not know if veterinary surgery will continue to become more specialized with additional training and focused as in the human field. There are far less veterinary patients then there are human patients that may need specialization in very specific areas; for example kidney and liver disease in the medicine realm and thoracic or hip surgery in the surgical arena. However, some surgeons and medical clinicians have limited their own practices to their own preferences. At this time, there are not any special certifications in any areas of surgery such as soft tissue, cardiovascular, minimally invasive or orthopedics. There are certifications in Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation and Anesthesia. In medicine, there is specialization in Neurology, Internal Medicine, Dermatology and Cardiology. Dentistry, Pathology and Radiology also have separate specialty colleges. With all of these entities, I am not sure how much further specialization will continue in the veterinary field, but I think there will always be individuals that excel in certain procedures or diagnosis in their area of practice.

CVSS currently has three locations, are there plans to open additional locations?
We have considered expanding to the Eastern shore but do not have a definitive time goal at this time. We would like to replace or expand our facility in Towson within the next 2-3 years. 

What have you found most rewarding and challenging regarding being a specialist? 
I find surgery rewarding due to the number of patients that recover quickly and successfully. The most challenging area of surgery is cases that are inoperable, or animals that are very young but have terminal disease and cannot do well long term with surgery.

Are there any special clients/cases that you would like to share with readers regarding surgery and rehabilitation?
We have had many wonderful clients at CVSS over the years. The advantage to our rehabilitation cases is that we see them longer and become more acquainted with the patient and owner.
One of our long-term patients is Willow. Willow is a 15-year-old dachshund that presented originally for neurological disc disease. Willow had 3 back surgeries within a short time period and was one of our early long-term rehabilitation patients. Willow has since had a splenectomy and two surgeries for parathyroid adenoma resection along with a few benign mass removals. It is nice to have some long term patients since many of our clients we only see once for surgery.
Another long-term patient that comes to mind is Laddie who is now deceased. Laddie was a border collie that had many orthopedic and neurologic surgeries with CVSS. Laddie had bilateral TPLO surgery for cranial cruciate repairs, a right shoulder stabilization, and lumbosacral spinal surgery. Through all of Laddie’s surgical recoveries he was treated by our rehabilitation service post-operatively and towards the end of his life he was seeing rehabilitation to help with maintenance and endurance due to neurological changes that were progressing with age.

Is there anything additional you would like the readers to know about CVSS and rehabilitation?
CVSS started over 25 years ago as part of CVRC with the first 2 boarded surgeons in Maryland. As part of CVRC we have grown and continue to provide the best 24- hour comprehensive surgical care in Maryland. As chief of surgery and the managing member of CVRC, our goal is to continue to provide the best surgical care for our patients with compassion and empathy for both the patient and their caregiver. For additional information about Dr. Evans and CVSS please visit: