The field of radiology and diagnostic imaging has advanced so significantly over the last few years, it may seem as though pets are getting more diseases as they age. Truth is, we are just better at detecting them, many of which can successfully be treated or managed. The equipment used today in a highly specialized veterinary center like ours is typically the same machinery used in human hospitals. Ours just comes with lots of treats, hugs and love.
Veterinary Specialties Referral Center’s state-of-the-art imaging technologies and services include:
- Digital radiography (x-ray)
- Computed tomography (CT Scan)
- PennHIP and OFA Diagnostics
After researching the many options in Digital Radiography on the market, we elected to install a state of the art Eklin Direct Radiology system. The image quality and ease of use was far superior to anything else we were seeing on the market. Pet owners can take a disc with their pet’s images home. The Eklin system is DICOM compatible, allowing us to transmit the images to our radiologist over the internet leading to rapid, accurate diagnoses for our patients.
Other benefits of DR include:
Faster – no film developing, captures images in less than 20 seconds
Safer – no chemicals, less radiation exposure
Sharper – provides greater detail in evaluating bones and internal structures compared to traditional x-ray techniques
Better – easy to transfer and enhance images digitally
Computed tomography is essentially a computer-assisted x-ray technology that provides highly detailed cross-sectional images (slices), to evaluate the chest, head, abdomen, blood vessels and soft tissues.
We use a Siemens Sensation 4 CT which has several advantages:
Faster – scans typically under 30 seconds or less
Safer – most scans performed under light sedation rather than anesthesia
Sharper – increased image quality for viewing and 3D reconstruction
Better – low patient dose scanning protocols, less radiation
Patients scheduled for a CT scan will be sedated for the procedure and may be dropped off for their appointment if scheduled in advance.
Both imaging modalities are painless, non-invasive techniques that can be performed safely on an outpatient basis.
All of our diagnostic imaging modalities are DICOM compatible and are networked to an integrated PACS server allowing us to transmit the images to any radiologist over the internet leading to rapid, accurate diagnoses for our patients.
Thanks to our web-based access and storage capabilities, all images are available for your primary care veterinarian to view. Images are placed into your pet’s electronic medical record for easy retrieval and comparison as new imaging studies are performed.
PennHIP and OFA Evaluations
PennHIP is a multifaceted radiographic screening method for hip evaluation. The technique assesses the quality of the canine hip and quantitatively measures canine hip joint laxity. The PennHIP method of evaluation is more accurate than the current standard in its ability to predict the onset of osteoarthritis (OA). Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease (DJD), is the hallmark of hip dysplasia (HD).
PennHIP is more than just a radiographic technique. It is also a network of veterinarians trained to perform the PennHIP methodology properly and, perhaps most importantly, it is a large scientific database that houses the PennHIP data. Radiographs are made by certified PennHIP members worldwide and are sent to the PennHIP Analysis Center for evaluation. (Courtesy of the University of Pennsylvania)
Orthopedic Foundation for Animals’ mission is to promote the health and welfare of companion animals through a reduction in the incidence of genetic disease. The OFA is guided by the following four specific objectives:
- To collate and disseminate information concerning orthopedic and genetic diseases of animals.
- To advise, encourage and establish control programs to lower the incidence of orthopedic and genetic diseases.
- To encourage and finance research in orthopedic and genetic disease in animals.
- To receive funds and make grants to carry out these objectives.
For more information on PennHIP and OFA Diagnostics, click here.
Outpatient Diagnostic Imaging Services
In addition to accepting referrals for cases requiring diagnostic testing, we also accept referrals on an outpatient basis for CT Scans. Reports are typically sent within 48 hours and STAT requests are available as needed.