Pet ultrasound is now available for your cat or dog at Vetcetera Pet Healthcare Centre in Schuylkill Haven, PA. Ultrasound, also known as ultrasonography, is one of the most widely used tools doctors use for diagnosing health conditions and managing pregnancies in their human patients. There’s a good chance you’ve had an ultrasound device used on yourself. Veterinarians also find ultrasound useful when treating pets. It’s a safe, non-invasive, and painless method of diagnosing many types of injuries and disorders. Ultrasound allows vets to obtain accurate and highly detailed real-time visual images of internal organs and structures without having to use potentially dangerous x-rays or performing surgery to get a closer look. The Vetcetera Pet Healthcare Centre is equipped with the latest veterinary ultrasound device along with a veterinarian on staff who is fully qualified and highly experienced at performing ultrasounds.
How Does Pet Ultrasound Work?
Ultrasound technology produces very highly detailed real-time images by using a special computerized electronic device that transmits narrow and focused high-frequency sound waves. The device includes a small handheld wand fitted with a device called a transducer that can be applied to any area of a patient’s body that the veterinarian wants to examine internally.
The ultrasound waves can be finely tuned and modulated by the operator to pass through, be reflected by, or be absorbed by the tissues and surfaces they encounter. When they are reflected off of a surface, they return as ‘echoes’ and are picked up by an ultrasound receiver built into the transducer, and then digitally transformed into a two-dimensional image and displayed on a computer monitor. These images can also be saved to computer files to be viewed or shared at a later time. Ultrasound gives your vet valuable information about what’s occurring internally without having to resort to invasive methods.
What Is Ultrasound Used For?
Veterinary ultrasounds are most often used by veterinarians to monitor the progress of pregnancies in pets, just as they are in humans. But ultrasound is also very useful for diagnosing many types of medical disorders and internal injuries. They are also helpful in keeping track of the healing process after an injury or a surgical procedure. Some of the situations where your vet might decide to perform an ultrasound scan on your pet include if they suspect that they have swallowed a foreign object, if they’ve had abnormal lab test results, or if there are symptoms of a heart condition. Anytime your veterinarian in Schuylkill Haven has reason to believe that something is wrong with your pet internally, they may order an ultrasound scan to be done.
The Limitations Of Ultrasound
The high-frequency sound waves being emitted by the device can’t travel through air, so they are of limited use in imaging internal organs that contain large air spaces like the lungs and some other organs. The waves are also reflected off of bone, so the brain and spinal cord covered by the vertebrae can’t be imaged.
The Pet Ultrasound Procedure
Your veterinarian will probably ask you to withhold food and water for at least 12 hours before the pet ultrasound session if they are having their abdominal region examined, and your cat or dog may need to be kept from urinating for a period of time if their bladder is being imaged. During the procedure, your pet will lie on its back on a padded table with a veterinary tech present to help keep them calm and still. Most pets aren’t bothered by the exam at all as it is a gentle and relaxing procedure, but some pets may need a mild sedative to keep them quiet. Ultrasound sessions usually take between 30 minutes to an hour.
The transducer wand needs to come into direct contact with the skin to be effective, so the area to be examined will need to be shaved. Your vet can see the results in real-time on the monitor, so they’ll often be able to give you the results right away. After the ultrasound procedure is completed and you’ve discussed the results with your vet, you’ll be able to take your pet home with you right away.
If you’d like to know more about the pet ultrasound procedure, or any other healthcare services, contact us at the Vetcetera Pet Healthcare Centre in Schuylkill Haven, PA, and we’ll be happy to answer your questions.