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Digital x-ray

Advanced imaging investigations

X-ray is an important part of finding out what might be wrong with an ill pet.  We use advanced digital x-ray.  This is quicker and higher quality than old systems.  This makes it safer for your pet and gives our vets more information.

Why Digital X-Ray?

Our Teignmouth and Dawlish surgeries have had digital x-ray for several years.  Similar to digital photography, digital radiography removes the need for processing of films and means that X-ray images are instantly available for examination by our vets and visible on all computer screens within the practice. Other advantages include:

  • Better image quality.
  • Safer for pets because lower exposure (power) is needed.
  • Quicker diagnosis as perfect images can be more easily obtained.
  • Environmentally friendly because no horrible chemicals are used.
  • Images can be stored and retrieved more easily.
  • Images can be transferred between vets in our group and with specialists anywhere around the world for second opinions.

Taking and interpretation of x-rays (radiography) is very important in providing information about a pet’s disease. It is far more than just a way of diagnosing a broken bone. Radiography is an essential part of investigations into lung, heart, liver, joint diseases and many abdominal problems.

All our vets do radiographic investigations. If there is a more complicated case we will use specialists in America to view the x-ray and give an opinion. Our surgery sites at Dawlish and Teignmouth are equipped with the latest digital x-ray machines.  These enable excellent quality radiographs to be produced.

Our dental suite in Dawlish also has digital x-ray for teeth.  This provides an image of your pet’s teeth within about 15 seconds allowing rapid diagnosis of dental disease.  It is very difficult to perform dentistry properly without the use of radiographs as so much dental disease affects the areas below the gum that cannot be seen without it.

Why will my vet need to take x-rays?

Your vet can get a lot of information about what might be wrong with your pet from examining them and talking to you.  If your vet thinks there may be a problem inside your pet’s body an X-ray may be needed.  X-ray and ultrasound allow your vet to look at the organs and bones inside your pet’s body without having to perform an operation.

Are X-rays dangerous to my pet?

In small doses X-rays are perfectly safe. Digital X-ray means we can use lower power X-rays making it even safer. In large numbers X-rays can be harmful which is why our vets and nurses cannot be in the same room as your pet when they are taking X-rays. This means that your pet may need a general anaesthetic or sedation to keep them still. It is important that your pet lies still as the exposure is made or the final picture will be blurred.

Can the test do any damage to my pet?

The small doses of X-rays used to produce pictures of your pet, will not cause side effects. High doses and long periods of time can be dangerous and this is why your vet cannot hold your cat or dog for the examination. The risk associated with the tests is that of the anaesthetic or sedation in an ill animal. Your vet will explain the risks to you and if you are in any doubt about the risks please ask your vet to explain why they need to do the tests. In almost all cases the risk of not finding out what is wrong with your pet (and therefore not being able to treat it) is far worse than the risk of the anaesthetic.