A cardiac ultrasound is better known as an Echocardiogram (ECHO). This procedure is non-invasive and allows a veterinarian to see the inside of the heart, evaluate the size, tissue character, and muscle function.
A specialized sonographer performs the ECHO examination and it is interpreted by a veterinarian cardiologist. Components of the ECHO can include the two-dimensional exam (to see lesions and overall cardiac structure), the M-mode study (used to measure size and function), and the doppler examination (evaluate blood flow).
There are several reasons or indictations for an Echocardiogram examination.
- Congenital or Acquired Heart Disease
- Heart Murmur
- Irregular Heart Rate
- Disease shown on X-Ray
- Evaluate Heart Size
- Evaluate Heart Function
- Disease of the Heart Valves
- Pericardial Effusion
- Cardiac Tumor
- Evaluate Fluid around the Heart
- Identify Birth Defects
- Chest Cavity and Cranial Mediastinum
How is an ECHO performed?
- Specialized equipment is needed to perform an ECHO.
- The pet’s hair may need to be clipped.
- The pet is placed on a padded table on their side.
- The chest wall is exposed to the ultrasound technologist.
- Conductive gel is placed on the ultrasound probe (transducer).
- The ultrasound technologist places the probe between the ribs and moves it across the surface.
- Sound waves are transmitted from the probe and echo back from the heart structures.
- Based on the number of sound waves absorbed or reflected, an image of the heart is displayed on the computer screen.
- An ECHO exam is not painful and is non-invasive.
- It is a safe procedure that takes about 30-60 minutes to complete.
- Additional time is spent measuring the heart values.
Anesthesia might be needed for an ECHO exam if your pet does not like lying on its’ side for a period of time. Mild anesthesia may be used if your pet is having difficulty in breathing due to heart or lung disease. All pets will be evaluated by trained staff before considering anesthesia.
Advanced Animal Imaging is dedicated to providing breeders with an affordable option for cardiac certifications and meeting breed requirements. AAI follows all guidelines established by AKC, ARCH, OFA, CHIC, and other breed health organizations. AAI has partnered with Dr. Sanders DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVIM (Cardiologist) and Dr. MacKie DVM, Diplomate ACVIM (Cardiologist).
Advanced Animal Imaging is a leader in new technology for animals with innovative methods in disease diagnosis and reliable problem solving mechanisms. Ask about our pricing and multiple discount rates. Contact AAI today to schedule your Echocardiogram by calling 260-434-1555.