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Ophthalmic team

Rodrigo Pinheiro de Lacerda

DVM DipECVO MRCVS

Head of Ophthalmology
European Specialist in Veterinary Ophthalmology

Rodrigo graduated from the University of Lisbon (Portugal) in 2006 and spent the following 6 months working in a small animal hospital in Lisbon. In 2007 he undertook a Small Animal Medicine and Surgery Internship at the Animal Health Trust (Newmarket), where he developed a strong interest in Ophthalmology, and actually visited Willows’ Ophthalmology Department as part of his training.

Rodrigo extended his clinical experience visiting several referral ophthalmology practices in the UK following his internship. During the next two years he further pursued this interest and obtained the General Practitioner Certificate in Ophthalmology. From 2011 to 2014 he completed an ophthalmology residency training programme by the European College of Veterinary Ophthalmology at the University of Barcelona (Spain).

Rodrigo joined Willows in April 2015 and was awarded the Diploma of the European College of Veterinary Ophthalmology in 2016. Along with a passion for surgery, Rodrigo also enjoys the challenges of the daily clinical work.

In his spare time he enjoys the company of his Dachshund (Cacao) and British Shorthair (Areia), as well as playing football, tennis, skiing and, when back home, surfing.

Working at Willows is a great opportunity to become part of a team of excellent professionals with an absolute dedication to their patients. The very demanding environment assures the continuing scientific development and the satisfaction of providing the best care possible.

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Samuela Mazzucchelli

DVM DipECVO MRCVS

European Specialist in Veterinary Ophthalmology

Following graduation from the University of Milan (Italy) in 2004, Samuela moved to France and completed externships over 9 months at the University of Maisons Alfort and the Fregis Veterinary Hospital. It was during this time that she developed a strong interest in Veterinary Ophthalmology and completed the Diplome d’Ecole d’Ophthalmologie Veterinaire at the University of Maisons Alfort.

Samuela returned to Italy in 2006 to undertake an Internship in Small Animal Medicine and Surgery at the Clinica Veterinaria San Marco (Padova). From 2007 to 2010, she completed an ECVO ophthalmology residency training programme at the University of Maisons Alfort in France.

After the completion of the ECVO program in 2010, Samuela returned to Italy where she worked as an independent specialist in Ophthalmology in Northern Italy. She also has spent periods of time working in the UK since 2015. Samuela was awarded the Diploma of the European College of Veterinary Ophthalmology in 2015, and she became a European Specialist in Veterinary Ophthalmology.

Samuela joined the Willows Veterinary Centre and Referral Service in July 2017. She has a special interest in ocular pathology as well as corneal disease and surgery. Samuela says “Working at Willows allows me to be part of a talented and passionate team, and a chance to become the best ophthalmologist I can. Willows offers a very high level of patient care, and working here gives me the opportunity for constant scientific and clinical development”.

In her spare time, Samuela enjoys spending time with her two horses Eclipse and Lohengrina. She loves travelling all around the world discovering new cultures, meeting people, visiting countries, and watching wildlife.

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Alberto Palella Gomez

DVM MRCVS

Intern in Veterinary Ophthalmology

Alberto graduated from the University of Madrid in 2013, where he developed a passion for veterinary ophthalmology. During his final years as a student he was awarded a 2 year scholarship in ophthalmology at the Veterinary Teaching Hospital of the same University. After graduating he worked for a few months in general practice and then moved to the UK where he worked for two years in a busy small animal practice. In 2016, he completed a small animal rotating internship at Willows and following this he worked in the West Midlands before returning to Willows to undertake an Ophthalmology internship.

Alberto enjoys all aspects of veterinary ophthalmology but has a particular interest in uveitis and neuro-ophthalmology. He hopes to continue his studies towards the European Diploma in Veterinary Ophthalmology.

In his spare time Alberto enjoys photography, especially landscape and wild-life; mountain biking; travelling around the world and in particular discovering new places in the UK.

He said: "Having previously worked at Willows as a rotating intern I relished being part of a highly skilled, multi-disciplinary team that sets the highest standards in veterinary medicine with state-of-the-art facilities. I share the same commitment to excellence in all aspects of veterinary medicine, client and patient care and, therefore Willows is ideal to further my training towards specialisation".

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