Estimated reading time: 2 minutes
by Dr Lauren Archer, North Coast Veterinary Services, Brunswick Heads, NSW
Our practice had only been opened for two years when we decided to invest in a brand new CT scanner. We’ve had it for two months and we’re using it to diagnose a few different things. We’ve used it with elbow and chest disease, and run some spinal CT scans due to hemiplegia.
What’s good about it
This unit is a giant step beyond X-rays. We can see more fine details and make better prognostic and treatment decisions. We’ve used it with a wide range of animals including dogs, cats, a sea turtle and a goat. It’s not suitable for animals heavier than 120 kilos as they have to be lifted onto the machine. The animals also have to fit through the centre of the CT scanner.
We can see the results while the scan is happening. We can then review them in-house or send them off to specialist radiographers to do further detailed review. The scanner software communicates with our practice management software and automatically adds the scans to the patient file.
I did a three-day training course, along with all our nurses, on the operation of the unit. GE Healthcare ran the course at our practice. It’s really improved our diagnostic capabilities. We also let other vets in the area use it for their cases.
What’s not so good
It’s a big investment, not something you would buy on a whim. It needs to be housed in a room about the size of an average consult room. It’s not suitable for smaller clinics.