Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A Look at Veterinary Radiology

A Look at Veterinary Radiology is a guest post by Maire Hunter.

As the saying goes, dogs are man’s best friend, but you can just as easily replace “dogs” with “pets.” People around the world own cats, birds, reptiles and other domesticated animals. Whatever a pet owner’s preference, there’s a good chance the animals have become a part of the family. Pets become almost like children and, like children, they can get sick. Should your pet fall sick or become injured, it’s time to see a veterinarian.

Every veterinarian and technician receives extensive training in animal care and treatment, including courses in animal anatomy and physiology. Pet and livestock owners trust veterinarians to provide competent care and treatment to their beloved animals. Sometimes veterinarians see animals that are in pain, but the source of their discomfort isn’t clear cut. Animal radiologists and ultrasonographers use X-rays and other technology to take pictures of an animal’s internal organs and tissues if it’s determined an ultrasound is necessary for diagnosis. Veterinarians are able to detect cysts, tumors and diseases from the images they get from the scans. These procedures ensure each animal receives an accurate diagnosis and can help detect swallowed toys, string or other objects harmful to the animal’s health.

Images captured during the exam can be saved to a DVD for later viewing, which is helpful for tracking a pet’s health over time. A veterinarian can compare images taken at the time of diagnosis and track an animal’s progress during a course of treatment. When these exams are needed, either the vet or a technician will prepare the patient and the necessary tools. Veterinary radiologists and ultrasonographers start their day by calibrating their machine and inspecting its parts. Routine maintenance like tee probe repair is necessary to ensure the machine works properly and provides accurate images with minimal stress on the animal.

Once the medical equipment is ready, the vet or technician will escort or carry an animal to the examining room. Depending on the procedure and animal’s demeanor, anesthesia may be used to ensure the doctor gets accurate diagnostic results. Patient comfort is the primary goal. The pet must feel comfortable and safe while undergoing an exam to avoid injury to itself, its owner, the office staff and to avoid damage to the equipment.

After the exam, the technician makes sure the animal is resting quietly and comfortably before going over the results with the vet. After that, the task is to determine an effective treatment plan and confer with the animal’s owner before beginning treatment.

In addition to exams in the veterinary office, portable radiology and ultrasound machines allow vets to provide mobile exams. Although a vet’s office can accommodate household pets, but not livestock or zoo animals. Portable equipment is useful for sick animals who need to stay confined or on the farm where they live.

A veterinarian’s job is important and the best doctors take pride in providing top-notch medical care for their patients. From basic check-ups to radiology and ultrasound exams, pet owners can trust their beloved family additions to vets who strive to provide excellent care for all kinds of animals.

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