Izzy & Flo

Episode Details


18th August 2016


For the first time in the history of The Supervet, four brand new hour-long documentary specials go beyond the operating table to delve deeper into the science behind Noel’s cutting-edge procedures, revealing how he continually pushes the boundaries of veterinary medicine, with the help of special onscreen 3D graphics giving viewers a glimpse into the extraordinary ambition of Noel’s state of the art surgeries.

Everyday Noel faces new challenges that require exceptional solutions.

As with the regular Supervet episodes, we learn of the backstories of the families as Noel enters the newest frontier in medicine and pets go through operations, some of which have never been attempted in human or animal surgery before. We follow the stories of our featured pets throughout their ‘bionic’ journey; from the moment they are brought into the practice for treatment to their amazing physical transformations which bring relief and joy as owners are reunited with their beloved pets.

In tonight’s episode, Professor Noel Fitzpatrick combines biology and biomechanics, infusing his unique implants with stem cells to grow bone and cartilage in two ground-breaking operations.


Sarah brings in her energetic seven month old Italian Spinone, Flo, to see Noel after scans reveal she has a hole in her shoulder joint.  She is in significant pain due to the missing cartilage exposing raw bone and the joint fluid getting into the hole.  With regenerative medicine opening up new horizons, Noel offers Sarah a custom made implant to exactly fill the hole in Flo’s joint, which will then be packed full of cells harvested from Flo’s own tissue to encourage the implant to fully integrate with the bone, and to create a new cartilage joint surface.

It’s a revolutionary technique that Noel is the first ever person to attempt in a clinical patient, but Sarah is willing to take the chance; putting her faith in Noel – and biology – in the hope of giving Flo the best possible outcome…

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Lisa’s seven year old Border Collie Izzy has a broken front leg, having been hit by a car five months ago. Sadly the initial fracture repair failed, got infected, has loose implants with dead bone, and now a large gap where the bone has wasted away. Lisa is reluctant to amputate so Noel proposes a new treatment that has never been tried before; replacing the big defect in the bone with a titanium scaffold injected with stem cells, which he hopes will grow into new bone. It’s a high risk operation but Izzy is in constant pain with very limited options apart from amputation.

If Noel succeeds, it could change the future of veterinary and even human surgery. But the treatment is lengthy, and only time will tell if the stem cells will turn into new bone to bridge the gap in Izzy’s leg…

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