I guess everyone is familiar with ultrasound scanning in healthcare settings whether it be for checking on pregnancies or diagnosing heart disease, thrombosis or appendicitis.

It’s hard to believe that when I graduated from University, ultrasound was a new and poorly developed technology. We had rudimentary equipment that could measure the depth of fat on the back of a pig or pick up the heartbeat of a calf or foal in the womb.

In the early days of practice here in Bicester, we purchased a machine which was used for pregnancy diagnosis in cattle & horses and proved to be a great addition to just relying on rectal palpation.

This machine was also used in our small animal work for pregnancy scans and basic heart scanning.

Ultrasound machine
Compared to what we have today, looking back the images seemed very basic, yet it still provided a huge advance for the practice at the time.

I’m pleased to say we have just purchased probably the 5th or 6th replacement of that original machine and the advancement of technology is incredible. The level of detail we can now see, even compared to the last machine we had from 5 years ago, is amazing.

Like anything this advanced, it still needs an experienced operator. In the past we have had specialists who would visit the practice for referral level scanning. Our last specialist Helen Renfrew had to stop visiting us as she has become head of the imaging department at Eastcott Referrals in Swindon.

Luckily, we have several vets who have developed their skills to a high degree including younger Vet Elliot Smith who hopes to complete an Imaging Certificate over the next few years.

Hopefully, your pet won’t need an ultrasound scan anytime soon, but for those that do, this upgraded scanner will help to give us a detailed and accurate picture of their problem and hopefully lead us to the answer much sooner than before.

Enjoy your pets
Jason Williams
Bicester Vets

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