Advanced Diagnostics Include Ultrasound, X-ray & OFA Screening
Lucerne Veterinary Hospital provides our canine and feline patients with the services of our state-of-the-art ultrasound and digital X-ray technology. Dr. Stephanie Monk has extensive training in the use and application of ultrasound technology. She has been performing ultrasounds and ultrasound-related procedures on our patients for approximately 10 years.
Imaging technology includes ultrasound and digital X-ray, but other examples of imaging include CT scan and MRI. Each of these offers a different way to look at the organs. Should your pet need a CT scan or MRI, we would be happy to refer you to a southern Maine or New Hampshire referral hospital, the closest locations with these facilities.
Uses for Pet Ultrasound
Ultrasound is a useful diagnostic tool that helps us view the organs of the abdomen, chest, and other locations, even the retina of the eye. We use ultrasound imaging for the following:
- Viewing the internal structure of all abdominal organs to determine if there are any abnormalities; if so, additional testing such as biopsy may be needed.
- Determining if surgery is the best choice for your pet.
- Checking for pregnancy and monitoring progress.
- Biopsies of abdominal organs with ultrasound guidance; this is generally a safe and well-tolerated procedure. With most cases, this can be performed with sedation only; general anesthesia is usually not needed.
Other types of biopsy may be recommended depending upon the case, including:
- Laparoscopic biopsy, where a very small camera and surgical instruments are inserted through tiny incisions into the abdomen to collect samples
- Surgical biopsy, where a larger incision is made
There are a few limitations to ultrasound: it cannot be used on bone and can be difficult to interpret when there is marked gas in the GI tract. However, it is an extremely valuable tool in diagnosing many diseases. Dr. Monk does the majority of our ultrasounds and is happy to answer any of your questions.
Uses for Pet X-ray
X-ray is a valuable tool in diagnosing disease and injury. We are equipped with a state-of-the-art, digital X-ray system, allowing us to see the bones and organs in more detail than ever before. It also allows us to digitally, and instantaneously, send X-rays to specialists for a rapid second opinion.
Certified OFA Screenings
We provide OFA certification X-rays for knees, hips, and elbows. This screening method follows the American Veterinary Medical Association guidelines for specific radiograph positioning to evaluate pelvic or hip conformation. The Orthopedic Foundation for animals (OFA) registers the results in their database and will submit results to the AKC.
Any of our veterinarians are pleased to discuss your imaging needs. Simply contact our hospital to schedule a consultation.