Associate Professor Denis Verwilghen

Website Camden Equine Centre
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Biographical details

Denis’ interests and expertise lay in general soft tissue and orthopedic surgery. He has a special clinical interest in surgical head disorders including advanced dentistry procedures. Denis performs complicated extractions, infundibular caries treatment and endodontics on a regular basis.

As a scientist and teacher he is particularly focused on basic fundamental aspects of clinical practice and biosecurity in veterinary medicine with an emphasis on surgical principles and hand hygiene.

Denis has a broad range of publications on various aspects of equine surgery with a particular focus on asepsis research orthopedic biomarkers and dentistry. Denis is author or co-author of over 50 international peer reviewed scientific publications, author of 5 book chapters in surgery related books and has presented over 100 presentations at national and international congresses. Denis started his career as an equine veterinarian in private practice in Ireland and the Netherlands immediately after graduation from the University of Ghent, Belgium in 2003. With the desire to improve his skills, Denis went back to academia at the end of 2004 to become a resident in equine surgery at the University of Liege, Belgium. In 2006 he defended a master in veterinary science degree on the subject of "Osteochondrosis and its relationship with IGF-I in the Horse". In 2009 he obtained a specialist diploma (DES) in Large Animal Surgery from the University of Liege and in 2010 Denis successfully passed the exam of the European College of Veterinary Surgeons. Denis then defended his PhD in Liege about the clinical impact of developmental orthopedic diseases in horses. After spending some time in Sweden as Head of the Equine Surgery Department in Uppsala University, Denis and his wife Gaby, an ECEIM and ECVECC diplomate, moved back to Belgium and started a consultancy based equine medicine and surgery service. In 2013, both took up a position of Associate Professor at the Equine Hospital of the Copenhagen University. In 2017 Denis ran his own private consultancy business, Equine-Specialists, performing peripatetic surgical and dentistry services around the globe. In February 2018, Denis joined the Camden Equine Centre veterinary team as the services Head and a Senior Specialist Surgeon.

Research interests

- Clinical research that leads to improvement in outcomes of clinical patients with an emphasis on surgical disorders in large animal patients.

  • Focus on equine dentistry with particular interest in improved diagnostics, minimal invasive extraction techniques, dental preservation by restorative treatments
  • Mortality – Morbidity recording and clinical procedural and outcome auditing

- Multispecies research that aims at improving surgical outcomes with an emphasis on basic surgical techniques, surgical infection control, tissue handling, team coordination and hand asepsis.

- Educational research

  • aiming at improving surgical skills.
  • aiming at training towards improved stress management and team work

Current projects

- Bio integration and wear analysis of 3D printed human Temporomandibular Joint prosthesis in a sheep model.

- Invetsigation into novel 3D printed cranioplasty implants

  • Prof. Dr. Maurice Mommaerts, European Face Center, Brussels, Belgium

- Osteochondrosis in the equine industry: genome project.

  • Dr Dorota Lewczuk, Institute of genetics and animal breeding of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Poland
  • Dr Steven Janssens, Livestock Genetics, Department of Biosystems, University of Leuven, Belgium

- Veterinary Hand Hygiene Project www.veterinaryhandhygiene.eu in collaboration with

  • SUND Faculty Copenhagen University, Peter Damborg (Veterinary microbiology), Magnus Arpi (Clinical Microbiology Herlev Hospital), Marianne Midtun (Hygiene department, Clinical Microbiology Herlev hospital)
  • Ontario Veterinary College Guelph University, Canada. Professor Scott Weese and Dr Ameet Singh
  • Professor Gunther Kampf

- Basic Surgical Skills and Multimodal approaches to reduction of surgical site and hospital acquired infections.

  • Dr Augusta Pelosi, North American Veterinary Heart Center, Florida, USA

- Suture Periostitis: a histological investigation into the content and closure of facial suture lines in horses.

  • Prof Carsten Staszyk, University of Giessen, Germany.

- SSI Definitions Workgroup: initiative takers Denis Verwilghen and Scott Weese

  • International expert panel composed of Dean Hendrickson, Dean Richardson, Ann Martens, Augusta Pelosi, Scott Weese, Gaby van Galen, Debbie Archer, Ameet Singh, JeffreyRung, Laura Nelson, Alexandra Vilen, Tom Gibson, Phillip Mayhew, Paul Morley, Barbara Dallap Schaer

- Colour Look Up Table CLUT use in dental CT imaging: an investigation into colour enhanced imaging techniques for better identification of dental structure

  • Davide Zani, Univeristy of Lodi, Milan

Selected publications

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Journals

  • Fenner, M., Verwilghen, D., Townsend, N., Simhofer, H., Schwarzer, J., Zani, D., Bienert-Zeit, A. (2019). Paranasal sinus cysts in the horse: Complications related to their presence and surgical treatment in 37 cases. Equine Veterinary Journal, 51(1), 57-63. [More Information]
  • Rabba, S., Grulke, S., Verwilghen, D., Evrard, L., Busoni, V. (2018). B-mode and power Doppler ultrasonography of the equine suspensory ligament branches: A descriptive study on 13 horses. Veterinary Radiology and Ultrasound, 59(4), 453-460. [More Information]
  • Verwilghen, D. (2018). The World Health Organization's Clean Hands Save Lives: A concept applicable to equine medicine as Clean Hands Save Horses. Equine Veterinary Education, 30(10), 549-557. [More Information]
  • Bienert-Zeit, A., Verwilghen, D., Feige, K. (2017). Antimicrobial treatment of dental and sinus diseases in horses [Antibiotische Therapie bei Zahn- und sinuserkrankungen des Pferdes]. Der Praktische Tierarzt, 98(10), 1048-1057. [More Information]
  • Ladefoged, S., Grulke, S., Busoni, V., Serteyn, D., Salciccia, A., Verwilghen, D. (2017). Modified Thomas splint-cast combination for the management of limb fractures in small equids. Veterinary Surgery, 46(3), 381-388. [More Information]
  • van Galen, G., Rijckaert, J., Mair, T., Amory, H., Armengou, L., Bezdekova, B., Durie, I., Findshoj Delany, R., Fouche, N., Haley, L., et al (2017). Retrospective evaluation of 155 adult equids and 21 foals with tetanus from Western, Northern, and Central Europe (2000�2014). Part 2: Prognostic assessment. Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, 27(6), 697-706. [More Information]
  • van Galen, G., Saegerman, C., Rijckaert, J., Amory, H., Armengou, L., Bezdekova, B., Durie, I., Delany, R., Fouche, N., Verwilghen, D., et al (2017). Retrospective evaluation of 155 adult equids and 21 foals with tetanus in Western, Northern, and Central Europe (2000�2014). Part 1: Description of history and clinical evolution. Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, 27(6), 684-696. [More Information]
  • Adler, D., Damborg, P., Verwilghen, D. (2017). The antimicrobial activity of bupivacaine, lidocaine and mepivacaine against equine pathogens: An investigation of 40 bacterial isolates. The Veterinary Journal, 223, 27-31. [More Information]
  • Adler, D., Cornett, C., Damborg, P., Verwilghen, D. (2016). The stability and microbial contamination of bupivacaine, lidocaine and mepivacaine used for lameness diagnostics in horses. The Veterinary Journal, 218, 7-12. [More Information]
  • Jorgensen, E., Christophersen, M., Kristoffersen, M., Puchalski, S., Verwilghen, D. (2015). Does temporomandibular joint pathology affect performance in an equine athlete? Equine Veterinary Education, 27(3), 126-130. [More Information]
  • Verwilghen, D., Singh, A. (2015). Fighting Surgical Site Infections in Small Animals. Are We Getting Anywhere? Veterinary Clinics of North America - Small Animal Practice, 45(2), 243-276. [More Information]
  • Verwilghen, D., Hernlund, E., Ekman, S., Pringle, J., Johnston, C., van Galen, G. (2013). A giant nonstrangulating mesenteric lipoma as a cause of recurrent colic in a horse. Equine Veterinary Education, 25(9), 451-455. [More Information]
  • Verwilghen, D., Janssens, S., Busoni, V., Pille, F., Johnston, C., Serteyn, D. (2013). Do developmental orthopaedic disorders influence future jumping performances in Warmblood stallions? Equine Veterinary Journal, 45(5), 578-581. [More Information]
  • van Thielen, B., Busoni, V., Chiers, K., de Mey, J., de Munter, M., Grulke, S., Verwilghen, D. (2013). MRI and CT features of an equine juvenile mandibular ossifying fibroma. Journal of Equine Veterinary Science, 33(8), 658-662. [More Information]
  • van Galen, G., Marcillaud-Pitel, C., Saegerman, C., Patarin, F., Amory, H., Baily, J., Cassart, D., Gerber, V., Hahn, C., Harris, P., et al (2012). European outbreaks of atypical myopathy in grazing equids (2006-2009): Spatiotemporal distribution, history and clinical features. Equine Veterinary Journal, 44(5), 614-620. [More Information]
  • van Galen, G., Saegerman, C., Marcillaud-Pitel, C., Patarin, F., Amory, H., Baily, J., Cassart, D., Gerber, V., Hahn, C., Harris, P., et al (2012). European outbreaks of atypical myopathy in grazing horses (2006-2009): Determination of indicators for risk and prognostic factors. Equine Veterinary Journal, 44(5), 621-625. [More Information]
  • Peeters, M., Verwilghen, D., Serteyn, D., Vandenheede, M. (2012). Relationships between young stallions' temperament and their behavioral reactions during standardized veterinary examinations. Journal of Veterinary Behavior, 7(5), 311-321. [More Information]
  • Verwilghen, D., Mainil, J., Mastrocicco, E., Hamaide, A., Detilleux, J., van Galen, G., Serteyn, D., Grulke, S. (2011). Surgical hand antisepsis in veterinary practice: Evaluation of soap scrubs and alcohol based rub techniques. The Veterinary Journal, 190(3), 372-377. [More Information]

2019

  • Fenner, M., Verwilghen, D., Townsend, N., Simhofer, H., Schwarzer, J., Zani, D., Bienert-Zeit, A. (2019). Paranasal sinus cysts in the horse: Complications related to their presence and surgical treatment in 37 cases. Equine Veterinary Journal, 51(1), 57-63. [More Information]

2018

  • Rabba, S., Grulke, S., Verwilghen, D., Evrard, L., Busoni, V. (2018). B-mode and power Doppler ultrasonography of the equine suspensory ligament branches: A descriptive study on 13 horses. Veterinary Radiology and Ultrasound, 59(4), 453-460. [More Information]
  • Verwilghen, D. (2018). The World Health Organization's Clean Hands Save Lives: A concept applicable to equine medicine as Clean Hands Save Horses. Equine Veterinary Education, 30(10), 549-557. [More Information]

2017

  • Bienert-Zeit, A., Verwilghen, D., Feige, K. (2017). Antimicrobial treatment of dental and sinus diseases in horses [Antibiotische Therapie bei Zahn- und sinuserkrankungen des Pferdes]. Der Praktische Tierarzt, 98(10), 1048-1057. [More Information]
  • Ladefoged, S., Grulke, S., Busoni, V., Serteyn, D., Salciccia, A., Verwilghen, D. (2017). Modified Thomas splint-cast combination for the management of limb fractures in small equids. Veterinary Surgery, 46(3), 381-388. [More Information]
  • van Galen, G., Rijckaert, J., Mair, T., Amory, H., Armengou, L., Bezdekova, B., Durie, I., Findshoj Delany, R., Fouche, N., Haley, L., et al (2017). Retrospective evaluation of 155 adult equids and 21 foals with tetanus from Western, Northern, and Central Europe (2000�2014). Part 2: Prognostic assessment. Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, 27(6), 697-706. [More Information]
  • van Galen, G., Saegerman, C., Rijckaert, J., Amory, H., Armengou, L., Bezdekova, B., Durie, I., Delany, R., Fouche, N., Verwilghen, D., et al (2017). Retrospective evaluation of 155 adult equids and 21 foals with tetanus in Western, Northern, and Central Europe (2000�2014). Part 1: Description of history and clinical evolution. Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, 27(6), 684-696. [More Information]
  • Adler, D., Damborg, P., Verwilghen, D. (2017). The antimicrobial activity of bupivacaine, lidocaine and mepivacaine against equine pathogens: An investigation of 40 bacterial isolates. The Veterinary Journal, 223, 27-31. [More Information]

2016

  • Adler, D., Cornett, C., Damborg, P., Verwilghen, D. (2016). The stability and microbial contamination of bupivacaine, lidocaine and mepivacaine used for lameness diagnostics in horses. The Veterinary Journal, 218, 7-12. [More Information]

2015

  • Jorgensen, E., Christophersen, M., Kristoffersen, M., Puchalski, S., Verwilghen, D. (2015). Does temporomandibular joint pathology affect performance in an equine athlete? Equine Veterinary Education, 27(3), 126-130. [More Information]
  • Verwilghen, D., Singh, A. (2015). Fighting Surgical Site Infections in Small Animals. Are We Getting Anywhere? Veterinary Clinics of North America - Small Animal Practice, 45(2), 243-276. [More Information]

2013

  • Verwilghen, D., Hernlund, E., Ekman, S., Pringle, J., Johnston, C., van Galen, G. (2013). A giant nonstrangulating mesenteric lipoma as a cause of recurrent colic in a horse. Equine Veterinary Education, 25(9), 451-455. [More Information]
  • Verwilghen, D., Janssens, S., Busoni, V., Pille, F., Johnston, C., Serteyn, D. (2013). Do developmental orthopaedic disorders influence future jumping performances in Warmblood stallions? Equine Veterinary Journal, 45(5), 578-581. [More Information]
  • van Thielen, B., Busoni, V., Chiers, K., de Mey, J., de Munter, M., Grulke, S., Verwilghen, D. (2013). MRI and CT features of an equine juvenile mandibular ossifying fibroma. Journal of Equine Veterinary Science, 33(8), 658-662. [More Information]

2012

  • van Galen, G., Marcillaud-Pitel, C., Saegerman, C., Patarin, F., Amory, H., Baily, J., Cassart, D., Gerber, V., Hahn, C., Harris, P., et al (2012). European outbreaks of atypical myopathy in grazing equids (2006-2009): Spatiotemporal distribution, history and clinical features. Equine Veterinary Journal, 44(5), 614-620. [More Information]
  • van Galen, G., Saegerman, C., Marcillaud-Pitel, C., Patarin, F., Amory, H., Baily, J., Cassart, D., Gerber, V., Hahn, C., Harris, P., et al (2012). European outbreaks of atypical myopathy in grazing horses (2006-2009): Determination of indicators for risk and prognostic factors. Equine Veterinary Journal, 44(5), 621-625. [More Information]
  • Peeters, M., Verwilghen, D., Serteyn, D., Vandenheede, M. (2012). Relationships between young stallions' temperament and their behavioral reactions during standardized veterinary examinations. Journal of Veterinary Behavior, 7(5), 311-321. [More Information]

2011

  • Verwilghen, D., Mainil, J., Mastrocicco, E., Hamaide, A., Detilleux, J., van Galen, G., Serteyn, D., Grulke, S. (2011). Surgical hand antisepsis in veterinary practice: Evaluation of soap scrubs and alcohol based rub techniques. The Veterinary Journal, 190(3), 372-377. [More Information]

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