Internal Medicine service designs innovative fluoroscopy solution
Vet specialists develop practical tool to help them when conducting swallow studies in small animals
An innovative device designed by a group of our vets at the Hospital for Small Animals has improved the practicalities and safety issues associated with conducting fluoroscopy procedures.
Fluoroscopy is a non-invasive imaging technique that produces continuous images displayed on a monitor, similar to an X-ray movie. Conducting fluoroscopy procedures on animals is difficult, as the patients need to stand still on their own so that staff are not exposed to the electromagnetic waves used in the procedure.
To solve this problem, our specialist Internal Medicine Service team designed a unique acrylic box for animals to stand in during swallow studies. As the box has no metal components, it gives clear images, allowing the animal to stand and eat comfortably.
Our Internal Medicine Service demonstrated the multiple benefits of their innovative fluoroscopy container recently when Gary, a three-year-old pug, was referred to our Hospital suffering from severe abdominal cramping. The team was concerned that Gary might have gastric acid reflux or a hiatal hernia, so conducted some swallow studies using the Hospital’s fluoroscope.
Gary remained calm and relaxed in the fluoroscopy container throughout the procedure and the vets were able to diagnose some acid reflux, but nothing else untoward. Gary is now receiving treatment for his reflux and is doing well.
Due to the availability of the live fluoroscopy and other specialist imaging techniques, our specialist diagnostic imaging teams can pick up subtle changes like the acid reflux in Gary’s case, which helps to optimise treatment.
Dysfunction of the food pipe; acid reflux; obstructive airway syndrome; and eye, skin and spinal problems are more common in brachycephalic dogs like Gary because of their body shape and structure. Potential buyers of brachycephalic puppies should be aware of these health issues before purchasing these breeds.
This live video of Gary’s fluoroscopy procedure shows how kibble soaked in x-ray contrast moves from his throat through his food pipe and into his stomach
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The Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies is a one-of-a-kind centre of excellence in clinical activity, teaching and research. Our purpose-built campus, set against the backdrop of the beautiful Pentland Hills Regional Park, is home to more than eight hundred staff and almost fourteen hundred students, all of whom contribute to our exceptional community ethos.
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