Upstate Vet offers Outpatient Cardiac Ultrasound services at our Greenville location.
Advanced cardiac ultrasound examinations are performed by a board certified cardiology specialist and require a referral from your pet’s primary care veterinarian. After the procedure, a report will be sent to your family veterinarian who will then contact you to go over the results.
When combined with the results of other diagnostics performed by your pet’s family veterinarian such as a physical exam, x-rays, and blood work, your pet’s veterinary team will be able to recommend the best treatment to address your pet’s symptoms and getting them feeling happy and healthy again.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is as a cardiac ultrasound?
A cardiac ultrasound, also known as echocardiogram, uses high-frequency sound waves to produce real-time pictures of the heart, its chambers, and its valves. Information gathered includes the shape, size, and function of the heart, the thickness of the heart walls, how effectively the heart is pumping, whether there are abnormalities in blood flow or the presence of blood clots, and the overall health of surrounding structures such as the pericardium.
This diagnostic test is best at identifying early abnormalities within these areas, which gives the medical team a better chance at recommending successful treatment.
Ultrasound is non-invasive, safe, and does not use radiation.
How do I prepare my pet for the procedure?
We ask that you do not feed your pet for 8 hours prior to the procedure. You may continue to offer water as usual. If your primary care veterinarian has advised that your pet be fed as normal due to a medical issue that would make it unsafe for your pet to go without food, please inform the staff upon your arrival.
What takes place during a cardiac ultrasound?
During the test, your pet is placed on their side or back. Most pets are quite comfortable during the process and relax while receiving lots of pets from our Cardiology team.
In order to get optimal ultrasound images, the ultrasound wand must have direct contact with your pet’s skin. This requires shaving a square of fur on your pet’s chest or in the armpit and applying gel to the skin. We understand that shaving a pet’s fur is upsetting to some pet owners. You love your pet and are going to great lengths for a diagnosis, which includes taking your pet to a specialty hospital for a test performed by a veterinary specialist. We know that is a great commitment of time and money and we want you to have the best results possible from the ultrasound.
Sedation is not given during an outpatient ultrasound procedure.
An outpatient ultrasound is intended for stable, healthy patients that require additional diagnostics in order to get the most information for diagnosis and treatment.
Should sedation be necessary for any reason (extreme anxiety, biopsy, etc.), a formal consultation with a cardiology specialist is required and the ultrasound will be performed at that time. Sedation is not given during an outpatient ultrasound procedure.
How long does the procedure last?
Most exams take 30-60 minutes.
When do I get the results?
The findings from the outpatient ultrasound will be relayed to your primary care veterinarian who will then share them with you. During the outpatient cardiac ultrasound appointment, you will not meet with the board certified cardiologist who performed the procedure.