Radiographs (x-rays) are used to see size, shape, and position of soft tissue structures and organs in the chest and abdomen, and to evaluate bony structures (skeleton). Abdominal ultrasound is used to evaluate the tissue density and fluid content of tissues and organs in the abdomen. Computed Tomography (CT) is a series of thinly sliced radiographs (x-rays), which are reconstructed like slices in a loaf of bread to create images of the patient that can be looked at three dimensionally (3D) and reconstructed to form a model. Radiographs and ultrasound are important for initial evaluation but a CT can provide more detailed images all at once.
CT scans in pets require the patient to be immobile for a short period of time. Most facilities require general anesthesia; however, Pet Specialists of Monterey (PSM) has a 16-slice Toshiba Aquilion, which collects full studies in 20 seconds or less. In most cases, this allows us to use sedation rather than general anesthesia.
Inpatient and Outpatient Services
In 2016, Pet Specialists of Monterey began offering inpatient and outpatient CT services. A CT scan may be recommended by your family veterinarian by or a doctor at Pet Specialists of Monterey.
Stable pets that are scanned on an outpatient basis will need recent blood work (within 14 days) and a referral from their regular veterinarian. Your pet will likely be discharged the same day and images will be immediately sent to a board certified radiologist who will review them and provide a written report. A formal report will be provided by PSM within 24-48 hours of the CT scan. The report will be sent to your family veterinarian, which allows your family veterinarian to review this information with you and continue to manage treatment of your pet.
For Referring Veterinarians
Thank you for trusting your clients and their pets into our care to collect CT images for you. Please know that while a specialist will be assigned to each pet during their stay at PSM, you will continue to be the primary veterinarian and point of contact for each client—unless otherwise requested. The staff at Pet Specialists of Monterey will provide you with the images and a radiology report within 48 hours of collection.