Radiography—better known as X-rays—serves as one of the most common diagnostic tools in veterinary medicine. X-rays are typically recommended when the results of a physical exam or laboratory screening are abnormal. At Powers Ferry Animal Hospital, we use an enhanced digital X-ray unit to examine a pet’s internal structures, including the bones, heart, lungs, abdomen, and other areas. This technology allows us to diagnose a number of conditions, including fractures, foreign bodies, and tumors. We also have a new digital dental X-ray unit to view below the gum line, aiding in the diagnosis of tooth and periodontal disease.
Benefits of Digital X-Rays
- Images can be produced in seconds, which means less waiting time for you and your pet.
- Images can be immediately viewed on a computer monitor for accuracy while your pet is in position on the X-ray table, resulting in a more comfortable experience and less radiology exposure to your pet.
- Images are clear and detailed and can be enhanced, aiding in a more accurate diagnosis.
- Unlike film X-rays, no chemicals are needed to develop digital images.
- Images can be shared via email, such as in cases when a second opinion (from a specialist, etc.) is necessary.
What to Expect
Sedation is not always required to obtain X-rays, but there are some instances in which it is. For example, some pets are unable to remain still long enough for the X-rays to be taken, whether it’s as a result of discomfort or apprehension. If sedation is necessary, we use safe, reversible sedatives that are often combined with pain medication to make your pet more comfortable for X-rays to be taken. A trained staff member will be monitoring your pet’s vitals while they are sedated until they are fully awake. Once your pet is sedated and/or ready to be X-rayed, they are positioned on the table. The equipment is placed over the target area, and the X-ray is taken. Repositioning your pet may be necessary to obtain various views of the target area. The images are produced within seconds and appear on a computer monitor.