Why do we take X-rays?
There are few of us today unaware of the advantages of x-rays. However radiography in the dog tends to be a little more complicated in that we are mostly unable to tell our patient to lie still, turn this way, turn that way, hold your breath, etc. Therefore, either heavy sedation or a general anaesthetic is usually mandatory. Also, since irresponsibly used x-rays can carry some hazards there are strict health and safety regulations regarding their use.
Consequently, radiographic examination in the dog usually involves an anaesthetic fee. In addition more than one view is necessary for accurate evaluation of a particular region. As a result most radiographic studies require several x-rays.
Sometimes the radiographs have to be interpreted and a specialist veterinary radiologist has to be consulted for this purpose.
Most of us are aware that x-rays are used for bone examinations and their use in determining fractures or breaks is imperative for the successful diagnosis and treatment of injuries to the skeleton. What you may not have known is that x-rays are one of the first lines of diagnosis in heart disease, lung problems, abdominal disease (including bladder problems) and are even used for obscure things such as tooth root abscesses. Where x-rays start to have their limitations is in the investigation of brain disease. Here MRI or CAT scans are more effective, but these forms of diagnostic investigation are less available in veterinary medicine.
All in all radiography is an extremely useful diagnostic tool that can be used in many, many investigative situations. One of our vets will be more than happy to discuss procedures and costs with you.
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