The radiology team at WestVet is comprised of board-certified veterinary radiologists, who are experts in all areas of diagnostic imaging and work closely with you and your family veterinarian in developing a treatment plan that is best for your individual pet’s health needs.
Our radiologists collaborate with other WestVet specialists to:
- Pinpoint a diagnosis
- Confirm the best course of treatment
- Identify traumatic injuries
- Provide additional expertise by reviewing medical imaging
Our advanced imaging will require a referral into a specialty department. We do not perform these services outpatient.
Computed Tomography (CT Scan)
Computed Tomography (CT) is an advanced imaging procedure in which ionizing radiation provides tomographic images (slices) of the patient. CT scanning provides incredible anatomical detail of structures like the skull, nasal passages, thorax, abdomen, spine, and elbows while avoiding the problems of superimposition seen on plain radiographs.
Contrast Radiography is a radiograph acquired after a contrast medium has been administered to highlight or outline specific structures. This may include room air or CO2 gas, barium sulfate, or iodinated contrast agents. Typical contrast studies performed at WestVet include myelogram, fistulogram, cystourethrogram, intravenous pyelogram, and upper GI barium series.
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) enables a radiologist to see soft tissues such as the brain or spinal cord, joints, and cardiovascular structures in even better detail than radiographs (x-rays) or CT-scan. MRI uses a strong magnetic field to excite or shift hydrogen ions (found in all tissues) and reads the energy emitted as they relax to their normal state. MRI is the gold standard for imaging the central nervous system, including the brain and spinal cord and to evaluate patients with lumbosacral stenosis syndrome and suspected iliopsoas muscle injury. General anesthesia is required during all MRI scans.
Orthopedic CT studies are routinely performed with heavy sedation. CT portogram and CT urogram require short episodes of general anesthesia (30 —40 minutes). It is the best imaging modality to evaluate complicated joints like the carpus, tarsus, and elbows, and patients with nasal diseases, head trauma, and thoracic or abdominal masses. CT tracks IV contrast boluses to visualize the arterial, venous, and portal circulation. CT-excretory urography assesses the kidneys, ureters, and urinary bladder. CT post-myelogram is often performed to identify if any spinal cord compression is present.
Radiography is the most common diagnostic imaging tool and often the first step in obtaining a diagnosis for your pet. We offer state-of-the-art digital radiography suites, which are able to provide a rapid acquisition of digital images. All digital images are stored electronically, allowing for easy retrieval of your pet’s images throughout the hospital, as well as easy transfer to your family veterinarian for review.
Ultrasound (US) is an imaging procedure that uses high-frequency sound waves to generate images of the anatomy of interest. This sensitive tool can evaluate the abdomen, cranial mediastinum, shoulder joint soft tissues, tendons, and heart. This non-invasive procedure does not use radiation. US allows image-guided needle aspirates and biopsies of hard-to-reach tissues while minimizing complications. For most US exams, the patient remains awake or with a small amount of chemical restraint. Difficult biopsies or fractious patients may require sedation and/or general anesthesia.