Ultrasonography is a valuable, non-invasive imaging technique that complements x-rays and allows our veterinarians to better visualize internal organs in the chest and abdomen. During an ultrasound, high-frequency sound waves are directed into the body and bounce off the organs, creating a computer image of the inside of the body. This painless diagnostic tool is usually done without the need for sedation.
Ultrasound is invaluable for assisting in treatment decisions for various types of heart, abdominal, and reproductive conditions. It also allows us to biopsy organs, such as the liver and kidney, through a tiny "keyhole" incision. Ultrasound works in conjunction with other diagnostic procedures. For example, if an x-ray detects a lesion, ultrasound can help determine the origin of the lesion and whether it has spread elsewhere in the body. Using the ultrasound image as a guide, fine needle aspirates and biopsies can be obtained without major surgery and your pet can often go home the same day.