Effectively Utilizing X-Rays and CT Scans in Veterinary Offices
Do veterinary offices utilize imaging equipment like X-Rays and CT scans? Of course! If the veterinarian suspects your dog or cat has an internal abnormality after performing a physical examination, imaging is typically the next step to acquire more information. X-rays generally are the first type of diagnostic imaging performed. If there is a broken bone (fracture) on one leg, then X-Rays are taken both of the injured limb and the opposite limb for comparison. Then, your veterinarian will use the X-Rays to establish the best treatment plan. Another form of diagnostic imaging would be performing a CT scan. CT scanning provides a three-dimensional image of the internal body. This ability to see inside the body can significantly detect and treat problems affecting our animal companions. Keep on reading to discover how utilizing X-Rays and CT scans in Veterinary offices will improve diagnosis and treatments.
How Do X-Rays and CT Scans Work?
X-rays, also known as radiographs, have been used to diagnose medical problems in dogs, cats, humans, and many other animals for over 100 years. X-rays are the most commonly used form of diagnostic imaging in veterinary medicine because they are more affordable than different types of diagnostic imaging. They are beneficial for accurately diagnosing a wide variety of bone and soft tissue abnormalities throughout the body.
In comparison to an X-Ray, computerized tomography, or CT, is a process of taking X-rays from different angles. It obtains and displays a cross-section of the area of the body being scanned. Unlike the two-dimensional picture an X-ray captures, CT scans allow your veterinarian to see the complete bodily structure. When a pet requires a CT scan, they will need to be sedated using anesthesia. It is administered by a trained technician and overseen by a veterinarian. The sedation helps the animal remain calm and still throughout the procedure, as any slight movement will corrupt the images’ quality.
CT imaging is safe and does not harm the body. A veterinarian technician will conduct pre-scan lab work to ensure the furry friend is healthy enough for anesthesia. The veterinarian will be monitoring the animal throughout the CT Scan procedure and after their safety and well-being.
Why Are CT Scans Needed?
When a problem is suspected yet cannot be seen by a simple X-ray, a veterinarian technician may recommend a CT scan for a more detailed analysis. There are many situations in which a regular X-ray or ultrasound cannot provide the visual detail available through CT scanning. CT scans are particularly useful in detecting issues, such as:
Middle and inner ear disorders
Orthopedic conditions, such as hip dysplasia and joint degeneration
Brain or spinal conditions
Dental infection, such as abscess