Diagnostic Services for Huntsville Pets

Diagnostic Services offered by Pennington Animal HospitalRadiology

Radiographs, or X-rays, are one of the most common and useful diagnostic tools in medicine because of their ability to penetrate tissues and show your pet's organs and bones. At Pennington Animal Hospital we use X-rays to examine your pet's bones, lungs, heart, abdomen, oral cavity and other areas, and for diagnosing and monitoring many medical and surgical conditions. If we suspect your pet has a fractured bone, has swallowed a foreign object or is suffering from a heart problem, an X-ray can tell us what we need to know.

The diagnostic capabilities offered by X-rays are a vital element of veterinary medicine, especially because we can't simply ask our patients what is wrong. The importance of X-rays in securing your companion's health is why we continue to invest in the highest-quality technology available, including our recent acquisition of a IDEXX PACS system, which provides our staff with digital radiology capabilities. There are many important advantages to digital X-rays:

  • They can immediately be viewed on a computer monitor.
  • The clear, detailed images can be manipulated to achieve a better view of your pet's bones and internal organs, leading to a faster and more accurate diagnosis.
  • They take less time to process, which means less time for your pet on the X-ray table (and less stress), and less waiting time for you.
  • No harsh chemicals are needed to develop the images, reducing potential harm to our staff and the environment.
  • If a second opinion is necessary, digital X-rays can be sent by email to a specialist.

In some cases, it may be advantageous to coordinate with other highly qualified specialists for second opinions on your pet's digital X-rays. In those circumstances, the team at Pennington Animal Hospital Telemedicine utilizes Telemedicine for radiology consultations as part of our new digital system. Providing access to these specialists is another of the many ways in which we work hard to provide the most advanced and carefully considered care.

Blood Pressure Monitoring

High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, is far more common in pets than many people realize and can cause a number of serious illnesses such as renal disease, heart disease, diabetes, hypothyroidism and more. For these reasons, the veterinarians at Pennington Animal Hospital recommend blood pressure screenings for your pet during wellness checkups. Regular screens allow us to determine your pet's baseline blood pressure and check for hypertension. Signs of hypertension include:

  • Depression
  • Behavioral changes
  • Sudden blindness
  • Symptoms related to underlying diseases that can cause high blood pressure, such as endocrine and kidney diseases

At Pennington Animal Hospital, we use High Definition Oscillometry (HDO) to accurately and painlessly measure your pet's blood pressure. After your pet's blood pressure has been measured, we will explain the results and provide a recommendation if necessary. We will also discuss the signs and symptoms of hypertension and home care strategies to prevent your pet from experiencing this dangerous condition.

Diagnostic Services offered by Pennington Animal HospitalIn-House Laboratory

To best meet all your pet's healthcare needs, Pennington Animal Hospital maintains a full service diagnostic laboratory that allows us to perform complete blood counts, chemistry profiles, electrolytes, urinalysis, fecal exams, cytology evaluations, and other valuable tests for your pet. With our advanced laboratory technology, we can receive fast and accurate results, helping to determine your pet's diagnosis and what treatment therapy is required.

Our complete in-house laboratory is particularly essential to our emergency and critical care cases. We also offer several tests as part of your pet's wellness exam and specialized testing if your pet is in his or her senior years. For many tests we can often have results within 15 minutes.

 

Complete Blood Count

A complete blood count measures the number of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets in a sample of blood. The numbers of each type of cell provides information to help diagnose anemia, infections and leukemia. If your pet is undergoing treatment for a condition, a complete blood count can help your veterinarian monitor how your pet is responding to the treatment.

Blood-Chemistry Panel

A blood-chemistry panel or chem profile measures electrolytes, enzymes and chemical elements of your pet's blood. Included in a chem profile are important components such as calcium and phosphorous levels, liver enzymes, glucose and total protein. These measurements help your veterinarian determine how your pet's organs, such as the kidneys, pancreas and liver, are functioning. Blood-chemistry panels help diagnose and treat illness, as well as monitor your pet's response to treatment. A blood-chemistry panel is usually performed to screen for potential problems and risks before anesthesia is administered.

Diagnostic Services offered by Pennington Animal HospitalFecal Examination

Your veterinarian may examine your pet's feces under a microscope for clues about many different kinds of diseases, including difficulties with digestion, internal bleeding and pancreas disorders. Most importantly, a fecal examination confirms the presence of intestinal parasites, including roundworm, hookworm, whipworm, tapeworm and giardia. A fecal examination is part of your pet's complete wellness examination.

Urinalysis

Laboratory testing of your pet's urine can help detect the presence of specific substances that normally do not appear in urine, including protein, sugar, white blood cells or blood. Measuring the dilution or concentration of urine can also help your veterinarian diagnose illness. Urinalysis can be helpful in diagnosing urinary tract infections, diabetes, dehydration, kidney problems and other medical conditions.

If you would like more information about the Madison County pet diagnostic services Pennington Animal Hospital in Huntsville offers for your pet or to schedule an appointment, please call 256.883.4148.

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