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At Petsadena Animal Hospital, we are proud to offer the ability to perform abdominal ultrasound. Every ultrasound performed is reviewed by a specialist who provides us with a full report of the findings in a matter of days. For urgent situations, we are able to perform the abdominal ultrasound the same day it is recommended and get a full report within hours!

We understand the importance of obtaining a diagnosis in a timely manner in order to start treatment as soon as possible. Although lab work and x-rays can tell us a lot about a pet’s organ systems and overall health, there are circumstances where additional diagnostics are necessary. As a result, we make it a priority to offer advanced diagnostics to aid our doctors in obtaining a diagnosis sooner.

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Ultrasound is a non-invasive imaging diagnostic that allows us to view the internal organ architecture through the use of high frequency sound waves. The ultrasound transducer emits the sound waves into the body and measures them as they bounce back. The computer then creates a 2-dimentional image of the tissues on a monitor.

An abdominal ultrasound can help us assess the organs more closely by looking for changes in color, shape, or size. Additionally, we can identify if the organ tissue appears brighter or darker than expected. Finally, we use ultrasound to allow us to identify masses, cysts, free fluid in the abdomen, mineral deposits or stones. All of these possible changes can represent potential disease within the organ or in the abdomen. Based on the findings of the organs, additional testing such as a fine needle aspirate or a biopsy of the tissue may be recommended in order to obtain a definitive diagnosis.

A veterinarian may recommend an abdominal ultrasound for the following reasons, but not limited to, blood tests show signs of organ dysfunction, an x-ray shows signs of an enlarged organ or mass in the abdomen, the pet is exhibiting an enlarged bloated abdomen, blood tests suggest signs of internal bleeding, or if the pet suffered an injury to the abdomen.

An abdominal ultrasound can be performed without general anesthesia. Depending on the pet’s health, a sedative may be given to relax the pet so that we can obtain the best ultrasound images for proper evaluation. To prepare for the procedure, a pet having an abdominal ultrasound will need to fast for 12 hours prior to the procedure to ensure no food and minimal gas is in the stomach since that can make it difficult to see the surrounding organs. Additionally, the pet will have the hair clipped to allow the ultrasound probe to have proper contact with the skin in order to produce better quality images. Prior to performing the abdominal ultrasound the entire abdomen is clipped. Ultrasound is considered an outpatient procedure which means the pet will be discharged the same day even when sedation is given.

If you are interested in scheduling your pet for an ultrasound, please call us to schedule an appointment for a consultation with one of our doctors.

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