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Digital Ultrasounds For Your Pet

Your pet means the world to you - which is why it can be traumatic to both you and your pet when they’re sick or injured. 

When your veterinarian suggests that a closer look is needed, they often use medical imaging, such as an x-ray or digital ultrasound, to investigate the cause of your pet’s injury. These in-depth techniques can help to determine the best course of care for your pet. 


Medical Imaging

So what is medical imaging, exactly? 

Medical imaging is a tool that allows your vet to take a type of picture of your pet’s muscular system or bones in order to diagnose an issue. Similar to how humans get x-rays or MRI's for major issues, pets also get medical imaging. 

One of the biggest benefits of medical imaging is that it’s non-invasive, which means it causes as little discomfort to your pet as possible. 

Why a pet may need an ultrasound: 

  • Excessive or ongoing vomiting
  • Unexplained weight loss or weight gain 
  • Kidney blockage 
  • Heart disease 
  • An unknown foreign object has been swallowed 

Digital Ultrasounds

Ultrasounds are digital images that are created using sound waves. They are an extremely common form of medical imaging, especially within veterinary medicine. 

A digital ultrasound is especially useful in detecting abdominal diseases that an x-ray could not see - while complementary to an x-ray, they differ in that they focus on the tissue, rather than the bone. 

Benefits of digital ultrasounds include: 

  • Advanced treatment 
  • Affordable diagnostic costs 
  • No anesthesia or sedation needed 

The Process

Depending on how comfortable or nervous your pet is, they shouldn’t need anesthesia or sedation to receive a digital ultrasound. 

For most x-ray or digital ultrasound procedures, no anesthesia is needed, unless your pet is in a lot of pain and sedation will make your pet more comfortable. 

While the goal of the digital ultrasound is to provide a final diagnosis, further testing might be needed. An ultrasound may show that your pet has a kidney stone, or even a digestive issue that was previously not caught. If that is the case, further testing may be needed, such as a blood test, biopsy, or imaging test. 

Your vet will walk you step-by-step through the process specific to your pet. 

The general process is as follows: 

  • The ultrasound tech uses a small, hand-held probe that gently presses against your pet’s body 
  • The ultrasound machine uses sound waves (that are not harmful to you or your pet) to various parts of your pet’s body 
  • The sound beam is interpreted into a digital image by the machine, allowing the technician to see the abdominal area more clearly 
  • The images can then be viewed in real-time by your vet, and a diagnosis can be made.

Talk To Henderson Animal Hospital

Henderson Animal Hospital in Winnipeg, MB is your trusted partner in the care of your pet. 

Whether you need advanced treatment, or just routine shots, Henderson Animal Hospital will always put the health and well being of your pet first. Contact us today to schedule an appointment!


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