Radiography

Radiographs are a very important tool to help us diagnose diseases in animals, particularly for conditions involving bones, the chest or abdomen.  Paws at Yours does not have x-ray facilities, however we have arrangements with local clinics where this procedure can be performed, allowing comprehensive care of your pet. If radiographs are required, we will go through the details of this process with you. 

What happens to my pet when it is booked in for radiographs?

Most patients are admitted into hospital for the day to have radiographs taken. Please ensure your pet is not fed on the morning of admission, as they will most likely be sedated or anaesthetised to allow the best quality radiographs possible.  In most cases, results are available on the day. In some cases, we may suggest the x-rays be forwarded to a specialist for a second opinion. This is free of charge if required.  

Why do pets need to be sedated or anaesthetised to have radiographs taken?

When we have radiographs (X-rays) taken the radiographer asks us to keep perfectly still, often in unnatural positions.  Most pets would never lie still enough, in the correct position, for us to take good quality radiographs required to diagnose their condition. Sedation and anaesthesia allow us to get the most useful radiographs possible.

How are radiographs made?

Taking a radiograph is very similar to taking a photo, except we use X-rays instead of light rays. The usefulness of radiography as a diagnostic tool is based upon the ability of X-rays to penetrate matter. Different tissues in the body absorb X-rays to differing degrees. Of all the tissues in the body, bone absorbs the most X-rays. This is the reason that bone appears white on a radiograph. Soft tissues, such as lungs or organs, absorb some but not all of the X-rays, so soft tissues appear on a radiograph in different shades of grey.