Since your sick pet cannot tell us what is wrong, veterinarians must sometimes supplement physical exams with diagnostic testing. Greenview Veterinary Hospital is equipped with a complete, sophisticated diagnostic laboratory that allows us to measure more than 100 laboratory values, with results available in only a few minutes. In addition, we work with several outside referral labs if your pet requires specialized testing. Heartworm testing, complete blood count, blood-chemistry panel, urinalysis and fecal examination are the most common laboratory tests performed at our hospital. Below are short descriptions of each test.
Complete Blood Count (CBC)
CBC measures the number of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets in a sample of blood. The numbers of each type of cell provides information to help diagnose anemia, infections and leukemia. If your pet is undergoing treatment for a condition, a complete blood count can help your veterinarian monitor how your pet is responding to the treatment.
A blood-chemistry panel measures electrolytes, enzymes and chemical elements of your pet’s blood. Included in a Chemistry profile are important components such as calcium and phosphorous levels, liver enzymes, cholesterol, glucose and total protein. These measurements help your veterinarian determine how your pet’s organs, such as kidneys, pancreas and liver, are functioning. Blood-chemistry panels help diagnose and treat illness, as well as monitor your pet’s response to treatment. A Blood-Chemistry Panel may also be performed to screen for potential problems and risks before anesthesia is administered.
Your veterinarian may examine your pet’s feces under a microscope for clues about many different kinds of diseases, including difficulties with digestion, internal bleeding and pancreas disorders. Most importantly, fecal examinations confirm the presence of intestinal parasites, including roundworms, hookworms, whipworms, tapeworms and giardia. A fecal examination is part of your pet’s wellness examination.
Laboratory testing of your pet’s urine can help detect the presence of specific substances that normally do not appear in urine, including protein, glucose (sugar), white blood cells or blood. Measureing the dilution or concentration of urine can ehlp your veterinarian diagnose illness. Urinalysis can be helpful in diagnosing urinary tract infections, diabetes, dehydration, kidney problems and other medical conditions.
Radiographs (x-rays) are a powerful diagnostic tool and aid greatly in diagnosing your pet’s medical problems. X-rays are useful in examining your pet’s bones, lungs, heart, abdomen, oral cavity and other areas of the body. An x-ray can spot a fractured bone, arthritis, pneumonia, detect cancerous tumors, diagnose heart disease, and locate an obstruction or foreign body in your pet’s stomach or intestine. Our hospital also has the capability to perform renal and barium radiographic studies.