Benefits of Using Ultrasound for Pets
Ultrasound machines have been around for decades. Each year, they get more precise and provide greater clarity and diagnostic confidence to physicians. Ultrasounds and their advancements are not only beneficial to people’s health but also helpful for our furry friends too.
As most know, ultrasounds are a non-invasive means of scanning organs, vessels, and other systems within the body. And to put it simply, they are much more beneficial than invasive (surgical) and other scanning methods.
But, not all the benefits are apparent, which is why our team at Strata Imaging put together this guide to highlight all the top benefits of ultrasound scans on your pets. So, keep reading to learn more!
Benefit 1: Noninvasive
As we stated, ultrasounds are a noninvasive means of looking inside your pet’s body. This is amazing because it means that your pet won’t have any pain, or stress during the procedure.
During the procedure, a veterinarian might shave the pet’s fur in the targeted area to ensure clearer, more accurate images, although this isn’t always necessary and depends on the specific situation and the veterinarian’s approach. The absence or minimization of fur reduces any interference and allows the sound waves to travel unimpeded, producing clearer pictures of the internal structures.
After preparing the area, a small amount of ultrasound gel is applied, which aids in the transmission of ultrasound waves by removing air pockets between the transducer and the skin. Your veterinarian will then gently press the transducer—the hand-held device emitting sound waves—against the pet’s skin.
Regardless of whether shaving is performed or not, the overall experience is significantly more comfortable and stress-free for pets compared to other diagnostic procedures.
Benefit 2: Detailed Insights
Ultrasounds provide pet parents with detailed insights into what’s happening inside their pet’s body. This is possible because ultrasounds emit sound waves (at a frequency that is too high for the human ear to hear) that create a moving image on the screen that allows the vet to see things like organs, blood flow, and more.
This detailed level of insight is extremely helpful for pet parents because it allows them to understand better what’s going on with their pet and the best course of treatment.
For example, your veterinarian could spot an issue with your pet’s heart or a tumor that may not have been detectable with a standard x-ray. This early detection could save your pet’s life!
Benefit 3: Low Noise Level
One of the best things about pet ultrasounds is that they have a very low noise level. This means your pet won’t be exposed to loud, jarring noises that could scare or startle them (like with x-rays).
The only noise you may hear during the procedure is the sound of the transducer moving across your pet’s fur and skin. Also, the ultrasound machine will routinely beep as it’s working. But, this shouldn’t bother your pet too much, and they may even get used to the noise after a little while.
Benefit 4: You Can Comfort Your Pet
One of the best things about pet ultrasounds is that you can stay in the room with your pet to help comfort them during the procedure. This is a great way to help reduce their anxiety and stress levels.
Also, if your pet is particularly agitated or nervous, your vet may allow you to hold your pet during the ultrasound. This can be a great way to provide them with the extra comfort and support they need.
Benefit 5: Assists with Surgeries and Other Procedures
Ultrasounds are often used as a diagnostic tool to help plan surgeries and other procedures. This is because they can provide such detailed insights into what’s going on inside your pet’s body.
For example, if your pet needs surgery to remove a tumor, the vet may use an ultrasound to understand better the size, location, and type of tumor. This information can be extremely helpful in planning the surgery and ensuring success.
Ultrasounds can also guide needle biopsies (a procedure where a small tissue sample is removed for testing) and help locate areas that may need to be treated with medication.
Benefit 6: Assess Pregnancy
Vets can also use ultrasounds to assess pregnancy in pet parents hoping to breed their pets. This is because ultrasounds can provide detailed images of the developing fetus(es).
This information can be extremely helpful in determining the fetus’s health and the expected due date. It can also help pet parents prepare for the arrival of their new puppies or kittens.
Overall, pet ultrasounds offer many benefits for pet parents and their furry friends. If you think your pregnant pet may benefit from an ultrasound, talk to your vet about it.
Benefit 7: Diagnose Conditions and Injuries
Veterinarians can use an ultrasound machine to diagnose various conditions and injuries. For example, vets can use them to detect heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, and digestive problems.
They can also diagnose tumors, cysts, and other growths. Plus, ultrasounds can help assess the severity of injuries such as fractures, Sprains, and ligament damage.
Ultrasounds are also often used to diagnose conditions causing pain or discomfort. For example, they can be used to identify sources of inflammation, such as arthritis.
Benefit 8: Fast Results
Another great thing about pet ultrasounds is that they usually quickly provide results. This means you won’t have to wait long to find out what’s wrong with your pet and how to treat the condition best.
In most cases, the vet can tell you what’s going on after just a few minutes of scanning. Sometimes, they may need to take a closer look at the images or run additional tests. But, overall, pet ultrasounds are a speedy and effective way to get answers.
Benefit 9: Echocardiograms
Echocardiograms are a type of ultrasound specifically used to assess the heart’s health. This is because they can provide detailed images of the heart and its surrounding structures.
Echocardiograms can diagnose various heart conditions, such as valve problems, arrhythmias, and cardiomyopathies. Vets can also use them to assess the severity of heart conditions and help pet parents make informed decisions about treatment options.
If your pet has been diagnosed with a heart condition, you may want to ask your vet about getting an echocardiogram. This is a great way to get more information about your pet’s condition and how it is progressing.
Pet ultrasounds are a safe, painless, and non-invasive way to get more information about your pet’s health. They can be used to diagnose a wide variety of conditions and injuries and can also be used to assess pregnancy. Plus, they usually provide results very quickly.
Overall, pet ultrasounds are a great tool that can offer a lot of information about your pet’s health. If you have any questions or concerns, be sure to talk to your vet.