While the focus at Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital is on wellness care and disease prevention, sometimes pets do become sick or get injured. Our comprehensive diagnostic services mean that in most cases we can determine what is wrong with your pet quickly and accurately, allowing us to treat your sick or injured pet as rapidly as possible and minimize your stress.
At Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital, we use the latest in advanced digital radiology as part of your pet's diagnostic care. Radiographs are one of the most important diagnostic tools in veterinary medicine. X-rays are useful for examining your pet's bones, lungs, heart, abdomen, oral cavity, and other areas of the body. An X-ray can detect a fractured bone, tumor, heart problem and locate an obstruction or foreign body in your pet's stomach or intestine. X-rays and ultrasound are often utilized together for an even more accurate diagnosis.
Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital's state-of-the-art, digital X-ray machine offers many benefits for your pet, you, and our staff. Our digital X-ray technology produces clear, detailed images on a computer monitor that allow our medical team to make a more rapid and accurate diagnosis. In addition, because digital X-ray images can be saved on a computer, they can be transmitted quickly by email to outside specialists if a referral or second opinion were necessary.
Digital X-rays are easier and faster to process than traditional film X-rays, resulting in less time on the X-ray table and less stress for your pet. Finally, the harsh chemicals once necessary for developing X-rays are not needed for digital X-rays, reducing potential harm to our staff and the environment.
Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital offers abdominal, cardiac, biopsy-guided, and routine ultrasound services. Ultrasound is a pain free, non-invasive procedure that uses high-frequency sound waves to produce a real-time moving image of your pet's internal organs. The procedure allows the veterinarian to achieve a further depth of detail that complements information obtained from X-ray examinations.
Abdominal ultrasound allows us to fully examine your pet's liver, gallbladder, spleen, adrenal glands, pancreas, kidneys, urinary bladder, and parts of the stomach and intestines. Ultrasound examination of these organs is crucial when a diagnosis depends upon seeing an organ, or when surgery or anesthesia would not be desirable. Abdominal ultrasound has revolutionized the study of liver diseases, and is crucial to treating many types of cancer.
Echocardiography is a standard non-invasive technique for assessing cardiac anatomy, pathology, and function. It is the preferred method for diagnosing many types of heart problems. Because the heart is a very complex organ, animals, like humans, can suffer from a wide variety of heart diseases. In order to correctly diagnose and treat these diseases, it is necessary to see how the heart is functioning. With ultrasound, it is possible to watch the heart in motion and to measure each of its parts.
Using the ultrasound image as a guide, surgical biopsies can be obtained without major surgery and your pet can often go home the same day. An ultrasound is typically performed after blood tests, X-rays, and a physical examination indicates an underlying problem. Ultrasounds are typically not stressful for your pet and take anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes to perform.
Electrocardiographic Studies (ECG)
An electrocardiograph (ECG) is a snapshot of how your pet's heart functions. ECGs are very helpful at detecting numerous types of arrhythmias as well as a handful of other cardiac conditions that cannot be diagnosed with a stethoscope during a regular physical examination. You probably have seen an ECG machine or have had one done in your doctor's office as they are commonly used to test for common heart conditions in humans.
An ECG is a completely noninvasive, painless procedure that involves placing several electrodes on your pet's skin. The machine reads the electrical impulses coming from your pet's heart. The graph-like results produced by the ECG machine allow our veterinarians to diagnose numerous cardiac conditions. If we notice any abnormalities, we explain them and advise you on the next step.
Providing you with an accurate and timely diagnosis is very important to all the veterinarians at Bakerfield Veterinary Hospital. On the occasions when we require assistance to provide your pet with the best medical care, we use Pet Rays, veterinary telemedicine consultants, to help us evaluate X-rays. We also consult with a cardiologist for the interpretation of ECGs.
Our In-House Laboratory
Performing preventative medicine as well as diagnosing emergent internal health issues requires the ability to perform a wide range of laboratory tests on blood, urine, feces, and biopsied tissue. Without timely access to precise laboratory test results — blood testing, biopsies, microscopic examinations, bacterial culture sensitivity, and more — it is difficult to make an accurate diagnosis or assessment of your pet's health.
This is why we maintain an advanced in-house laboratory and regularly perform tests during your pet's wellness exams or when we suspect your pet may have a health issue. In many cases, our sophisticated instruments and diagnostic capabilities provide us with test results within minutes.
For example, diagnostic testing can detect heartworm disease, Lyme disease, infections, feline leukemia, intestinal parasites, urinary tract infections, and many additional diseases and conditions that can go unnoticed in their early stages. Early blood testing can show evidence of disease such as diabetes, changes in liver or kidney function, or simply provide a baseline for future reference. Diagnostic testing is also included in pre-anesthetic screenings prior to dental or surgical procedures that require general anesthesia. Annual wellness blood and urine tests, along with other diagnostics, assist us in the early detection of diseases and health conditions.
Would you like to know more about all the ways the medical team at Bakersfield Veterinary Hospital uses our diagnostic expertise to help your pet get well and stay well? Give us a call at (661) 327-4444 or send us an email today!