Computer generated digital radiography is one of a generation of new diagnostic techniques that help improve the quality of patient imaging and to refine diagnosis. We have had the benefit of this new technology for a year and have been very pleased with the quality of the images that we can produce. In addition we can attach images to a patient's notes for easy access and also e-mail then to referral veterinary surgeons for second opinions.
On the few occasions where a more powerful machine is necessary to image a horse's chest, back or pelvis for example; we can call upon the services of Neil Pearce a professional radiographer as the following case demonstrates.
A Recent Case
'Toots' is a nine-year-old Thoroughbred mare whose owners' discovered suffering from choke on arrival at a competition. After a short time the choke appeared to clear and the mare seemed fine; therefore the decision was taken to jump and she apparently performed without trouble.
Unfortunately the mare had aspirated food into the trachea and the lungs and soon developed severe pneumonia with a high fever, inappetance (reduced appetite) and a series of secondary infections.
She was endoscoped several times and tracheal washes were taken to identify bacteria involved and to determine what drugs were appropriate.
Although Toots responded reasonably well, after some weeks she still had a chronic cough and respiratory difficulty, which required further investigations.
A series of digital radiographs were taken of Toots' chest, which showed, as expected, an area of damaged lung albeit much less than anticipated. More surprising was the finding of generalised bronchitis / bronchiolitis throughout the chest.
|Caudal Dorsal image||Cranal Dorsal image|
This led us to embark on a long course of corticosteroids, which has led to good resolution of the symptoms.
Without the powerful x-ray machine and high quality imaging necessary to explore an adult horse's chest our ability to provide appropriate targeted medication would have been much diminished. It is highly likely that following therapy Toots will return to full health and competition.