Diagnostic Tools & Imagining
Digital radiography is cutting edge technology that allows instant visualization of x-rays on a computer screen, and eliminates film. These images can have the brightness and contrast manipulated as well as be enlarged to view small or subtle abnormalities. The images can be burned to a CD, printed out, or e-mailed. Digital radiography is state of the art equipment resulting in increased efficiency in image acquisition and unparalleled image quality.
Digital ultrasonography is available to evaluate soft tissue structures. Injuries to structures such as tendons and ligaments are most commonly ultrasounded. Chests and abdomens can be scanned to evaluate heart, lungs, abdominal organs and fetal assessment in pregnant mares. In foals, umbilical abnormalities and lungs can be evaluated via ultrasound.
East Coast Equine uses the latest digital ultrasound system, which allows high resolution imaging for the clearest projected pictures and dynamic digital video clip storage and playback. These images can be burned onto a CD, printed, or E-mailed.
Endoscopy provides visual examination of the upper airway from the nasal passage to the end of the trachea. This allows the veterinarian to assess and evaluate the upper-airway for conformational, infectious, neoplastic, traumatic, or neurologic abnormalities. Endoscopy can accompany any pre-purchase/sale examination giving the buyer information needed on the status of the horses upper airway. Lesions or abnormalities within the upper airway can hinder any performance horses ability to perform at competitive levels. Endoscopic examination can determine what the cause of abnormality is and what steps will need to be made to correct the underlying problem. Endoscopy can also provide visual examination of the guttural pouches, and flushing of the guttural pouches can be performed more accurately with the visual aid of an endoscope.
East Coast Equine is equipped with a 3m portable video endoscope which allows us to perform gastroscopy at your farm or boarding stable. Our scope provides visualization of the esophagus, stomach, and proximal duodenum (beginning of the small intestine). This state-of-the-art technology provides the best quality for thorough examinations. The video endoscope projects the image onto a computer monitor so the veterinarian is able to point out areas of concern to the owner or trainer. We are able to take still images in addition to video images to keep in the horse’s record or to send to a referral institution depending on the severity of the diagnosis.
Gastroscopy is the only way to diagnose gastric ulcerations and the best way to monitor response to therapy. Gastroscopy is a relatively non-invasive procedure that involves passing a 3 meter video endoscope into the stomach to check for ulcers. The horse must be fasted prior to the procedure in order to visualize the entire gastrointestinal system. Horses are sedated for gastroscopy to minimize stress to your animal and optimize the evaluation.
Signs of gastric ulcers include poor performance, weight loss, reduced appetite, irritability, and recurrent mild colic. If your horse is exhibiting some of these signs, you may want to get him “scoped.” In certain cases, gastroscopy is also used to obtain tissue biopsies to evaluate for signs of intestinal inflammation or neoplasia, in horses suffering from weight loss.
The tonometer is a diagnostic tool we use to measure intraocular pressure (IOP). Our tonometer has a light weight rebounding probe that allows for very quick and gentle contact with the surface of the cornea to obtain a reading. IOP is mainly measured in cases of glaucoma, which is increased pressure of the eye typically resulting from inflammation of the eye. Certain conditions that cause intraocular inflammation in horses include uveitis, ocular tumors, or luxation of the lens. One of the most common causes of glaucoma in horse is equine recurrent uveitis (ERU). It may be important to monitor IOP over time in cases of glaucoma as it can potentially lead to vision loss if not controlled. A normal IOP reading is between 17 and 28 mmHg.