Diagnostics

Quick diagnosis leads to quicker treatment.

APPOINTMENT

At Sumner Veterinary Hospital, we always strive to provide the best possible medical care for your pet.

We are proud to offer state-of-the-art diagnostic services to quickly respond to your pet’s urgent needs.

Radiography

We’re equipped to perform routine radiography services to identify many types of illness or injury when pets are sick or suffer a trauma.

Radiography, also known as X-rays, is one of the most common and valuable medical diagnostic tools. X-rays are highly useful for screening areas of the body that have contrasting tissue densities, or when evaluating solid tissues.

Why would my pet need X-rays?

If your pet is sick or has suffered a trauma, X-rays provide a minimally invasive tool to help our doctors diagnose your pet. X-rays are also used in general wellness exams to diagnose potential problems before they become serious.

When is X-ray testing appropriate?

We may recommend veterinary X-rays as part of a diagnostic procedure if your pet is experiencing any health conditions or as a preventive measure in a routine senior wellness examination. We use radiology alone or in conjunction with other diagnostic tools, depending on the patient’s condition. We’re fully equipped to perform routine radiology services to identify many types of illness or injury when pets are sick or suffer a trauma.

How is X-ray testing used?

X-rays can be used to detect a variety of ailments in animals including arthritis, tumors, bladder, kidney stones, and lung abnormalities such as pneumonia. They are also used to evaluate bone damage, the gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract, genitourinary system, organ integrity, and even identify foreign objects that may have been ingested. Dental radiographs help distinguish healthy teeth from those that may need to be extracted and identify any abnormalities beneath the gums including root damage, tumors, and abscesses. In some cases, we may need to sedate your pet or use short-acting general anesthesia.

Diagnostic Ultrasounds

An ultrasound is a highly useful tool when evaluating heart conditions, internal organs, cysts and tumors, and diagnosing pregnancy.

Why would my pet need an ultrasound?

A veterinary ultrasound is a highly useful tool when evaluating heart conditions. It can detect alterations in abdominal organs and assist in the recognition of any cysts and tumors that may be present. Many times, X-rays will be utilized in combination with an ultrasound as they reveal the size, dimension, and position of the organ. With the ability for real-time monitoring, ultrasounds are also utilized for pregnancy diagnosis and development monitoring.

When would my pet get an ultrasound test?

An ultrasound is a highly useful tool when evaluating your pet’s internal organs. An ultrasound is usually recommended when our doctors find abnormalities on blood work or X-rays, or to monitor a disease process.

How does ultrasound testing work?

Ultrasound equipment directs a narrow beam of high frequency sound waves into the area of interest. The sound waves either transmit through, reflect, or absorb in the tissues that they encounter. Any ultrasound waves that are reflected will return as echoes and convert into an image that is displayed on the monitor, giving a two-dimensional image of the tissues under examination. With the ability to obtain real-time information, outcomes can often be determined immediately.

The exam is completely painless. Light sedation may used to help the patient lie comfortably while the scan is being performed. Your pet may need to be shaved in the area of interest, as veterinary ultrasound images are of better quality if they have complete contact with the skin.

Endoscopy

An endoscopy is a highly useful medical imaging tool used to examine your pet without actually examining an internal organ or obtaining a biopsy. To perform an endoscopy, your veterinarian uses a thin tubular instrument with a small camera on the end—called an endoscope—and inserts it into an opening of the body.

Why would my pet need an endoscopy?

An endoscopy is a highly useful medical imaging tool used to examine your pet when they are experiencing symptoms such as weight loss, vomiting, or diarrhea. With endoscopic equipment, your veterinarian can examine different internal organs like the lungs (bronchoscopy), the colon (colonoscopy), and the bladder (cystoscopy). For your pets, the endoscopy can provide a minimally invasive way for your vet to diagnose gastrointestinal conditions and cancer, or in some cases, it can also be used therapeutically for an interventional endoscopy.

When is an endoscopy appropriate?

An endoscopy is a highly useful medical imaging tool used to examine your pet less invasively. An endoscopy is usually recommended when our doctors find abnormalities on bloodwork or X-rays and need to confirm a diagnosis. It can also be used for therapeutic purposes, which is termed an interventional endoscopy.

How is an endoscopy used?

An endoscopy is performed with either a flexible endoscope (bronchoscopy, colonoscopy, or endoscopy) or with a rigid endoscope (arthroscopy, cystoscopy, laparoscopy, proctoscopy, rhinoscopy, or thoracoscopy). The machine is made up of a tube that enters the body, an eyepiece, and a control section for the doctor to maneuver the equipment. Additionally, there are two channels within the endoscope. One channel can be used for various endoscopic tools to collect fluids or samples, and the other allows air or water to pass through. Special video cameras can also be attached that allow viewing of the procedure on a screen or recording a video of the procedure.

Endoscopies performed on humans only require light sedation; however, because animals don’t understand that a veterinary team is trying to help them, they will need to be sedated under general anesthesia for the duration of the procedure.

Laboratory Services

Diagnostic testing can identify problems your pet may be experiencing so that proper treatment can begin before a condition worsens.

Unfortunately, pets can’t tell us where it hurts, and oftentimes, a healthy-appearing animal may be masking symptoms of disease or illness. We recommend veterinary diagnostic testing to identify any problems and to begin treatment as early as possible. These tests are especially helpful when symptoms are unspecific or hard to define.

When would laboratory work be needed?

Most laboratory work is done through routine wellness exams as directed by our doctors. For emergencies or unscheduled visits, our diagnostic lab will run various tests to determine the best treatment for your pet.

We recommend regular tests to determine your pet’s health. If any concerns or conditions are found, we will help you decide on proper treatment. If your pet is showing irregular behavior, please schedule an appointment as soon as possible. Our doctors will determine which laboratory services are appropriate during your exam.

How do veterinarians use laboratory work?

To ensure a proper diagnosis, we first examine your pet by looking at their eyes, ears, and skin; then we check their cardiovascular, neurological, gastrointestinal, and skeletal systems for any abnormalities. We will then perform blood and/or urine tests if necessary to check their kidneys, liver, pancreas, and endocrine system. Based on your pet’s condition, we may recommend further diagnostic testing.

If you’re concerned that something may be wrong with your pet, please call us to schedule a medical assessment.

Allergies

Allergies can make life uncomfortable for your pet. Protect them from irritation with proper testing and treatment to relieve any symptoms.

Allergies such as skin, bacterial, and food sensitivities make life uncomfortable for your pet. Protect your cat, dog, or other animal from irritating allergies with a proper diagnosis.

Why should my pet get tested for allergies?

With a proper diagnosis, we can implement a long-term treatment plan to help relieve symptoms and improve your pet’s quality of life. Every environment is unique and every animal species and breed have their own reactions to those environments.

When should my pet get tested?

Your pet deserves to be free of discomfort. The first step in allergy treatment is preliminary testing through a routine wellness exam. If your pet is currently showing signs of discomfort, please schedule an appointment with our veterinarians as soon as possible. Allergic reaction symptoms include:

  • Scratching
  • Shaking of the head
  • Rubbing of the ears or muzzle
  • Licking of the feet
  • Raised circular lesions
  • Generalized flakiness and hair loss
  • Intense itching
How does allergy testing work?

We’re determined to help you discover the cause of your pet’s irritation. We will recommend the best long-term treatment plans to get them back on track to live their happy, healthy life. Veterinary allergy testing can be done in a variety of ways, including hypoallergenic diet testing to determine food allergies. We can diagnose and address these types of allergies in the hospital, or we can refer you to a dermatologist or other specialist.
 

Allergy Types
  • Bacterial allergy: Staph bacteria that are normally present in the environment can produce an allergic response in some dogs. In animals with poor immune systems, the bacteria can invade the deeper layers of the skin and cause an infection called pyoderma.
  • Contact allergy: Contact allergies are not commonly seen in pets. This form of allergy is a local reaction to some type of chemical.
  • Inhalant allergy: Inhalant allergies, or atopy, is the most common kind of allergy seen in pets. Allergic reactions may be from tree pollen, grass pollen, weed pollen, mold spores, and house dust mites.
  • Food allergy: Food allergies typically take a long time to develop and can display themselves as skin problems or digestive issues.