Our New CT Scanner is Installed!
We are excited to announce that our new CT scanner has been installed. We have performed several scans already and look forward to offering up the CT as an outpatient service very soon.
This CT scanner is the very first human CT in South Australia that has been adjusted specifically for use in animals. Our GE LightSpeed Scanner is an 8-slice Multi-Detector Computed Tomography (MDCT) unit. The platform is an excellent, high sensitivity unit capable of quickly scanning entire patients. 8-slice does not refer to image quality, but simply to the scan speed. A 64 or 128 MDCT would not be appropriate in a veterinary environment as these systems are for high end human applications like complex cardiac and vascular studies that require extremely fast speeds.
Strong candidates for CT scans include pets with lung disease, metastatic cancer, nasal and/or ear disease, abdominal and some orthopaedic conditions, and patients with metal implants that cannot be imaged with MRI. CT is also excellent in the acute trauma environment too.
CT is also excellent for performing subcutaneous lesion biopsies and other needle guided exams like myelograms etc. CT provides better differentiation of bones and soft tissues than conventional x-rays because this slice-based x-ray technology avoids the superimposition of structures that occur with plain radiographs. CT also differentiates well between fluids and soft tissues. During the CT, an iodine based contrast is generally injected intravenously which further increases demarcation of tissues, which assists in a more definitive diagnosis. IV contrast can very rarely cause side-effects for the patient, however our specialists will consider any predisposing factors that may result in contrast not being administered (i.e. cardiac disease or seizures et al).
Whilst CT technology uses ionizing radiation, the risks of radiation induced pathology is extremely minimal and the safe use of the machine by highly-qualified technologists minimises the radiation dose. Our aim is always to produce the highest quality diagnostic study using the least amount of ionising radiation.