Diagnostic imaging has come so far in recent years and can be used for a variety of purposes. There are many types of imaging including digital radiographs (x-ray), ultrasound, MRI, and CAT scans (CT scans). At Yorkshire Veterinary Hospital (YVH) radiographs and ultrasound are the most common types of diagnostic imaging we employ.
When is diagnostic imaging performed?
Your veterinarian may recommend diagnostic imaging for a variety of purposes. The type of imaging recommended will depend on what your veterinarian suspects to be wrong. Digital radiographs are used most commonly as they allow the broadest view of your dog's internal systems. Ultrasound is typically used for a more precise look at internal systems such as organs-- including the spleen, liver, and heart, among others. Ultrasound is most often used when an x-ray does not provide a detailed enough image or when we are looking for something more specific. Imaging such as an MRI or a CT scan are used for extra-detailed images and are usually employed by specialists.
Radiographs, or x-rays, have allowed medical professionals to see what cannot be seen on a physical exam. In the past radiographs were captured only on physical film; however, since we are a progessive practice we utilize digital radiographs. Digital radiographs instantly produce images that are superior in quality and detail. These images are easier to produce and share with colleagues for consultations if necessary. Additionally, digital radiographs are used in all dental procedures here at YVH to assess dental health below the gumline. Radiographs are a non-invasive, painless procedure that can be the key to diagnosing a patient.
When an x-ray does not provide a detailed enough view of an internal structure, mass, or body system, an ultrasound is often the next step. An ultrasound uses soundwaves to instantly create an image by bouncing off the tissues inside your dog’s body and reflecting them back to the probe. Ultrasounds are specifically useful when looking at an organ system, or when looking for a suspected mass. Another benefit of ultrasound is it offers immediate results.
At Yorkshire Veterinary Hospital we feel it is best to leave detailed procedures like diagnostic ultrasonography to the experts. We work with a board-certified veterinary radiologist who travels to our hospital to perform ultrasound procedures on our patients. Ultrasounds are also non-invasive and painless to pets.
If you believe your dog may require diagnostic imaging, please call our client care team to schedule an appointment.