While a comprehensive physical exam can give the veterinary team a great deal of information about what may be happening with your pet, additional testing may be recommended for further information. We utilize the latest diagnostic tests through several professional and in-hospital laboratories to help diagnose and determine a treatment plan for your pet.
Routine in-house lab testing includes:
• Blood chemistry and electrolyte analysis
• Heartworm testing
• Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases
• Feline Leukemia and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (feline AIDS)
• Packed Cell Volume (PCV) – for base hydration or anemia evaluation
• Ear and skin cytology
• Fungal culture
• Pancreatic lipase
• Parvovirus infection
More extensive testing is sent to an outside professional laboratory. By sending samples (blood, urine, tissue, etc.) to other labs, the veterinarians can learn a great deal about what is affecting your pet as well as what is the best course of treatment. Many of the results from these tests are available within 24 hours.
Some examples of lab work sent to professional laboratories include:
CBC and Blood Chemistry: These tests look at the types and numbers of blood cells, as well as chemical indicators of organ and system function.
Thyroid hormone levels: These tests tells us whether your pet’s thyroid gland is too active (hyperthyroid, relatively common in older cats) or not active enough (hypothyroid, not uncommon in older dogs).
Urine Culture: This test tells the veterinarian not only what type of bacteria is causing your pet’s urinary system infection, but also what antibiotic is the best choice for combating that infection.
Tissue Cytology: When your pet has a lump and the veterinarian uses a needle to pull (aspirate) some cells from it or to remove it, the sample is sent out to a lab for a histopathologist to evaluate what type of mass it is and whether it is benign or malignant.
Histopathology: In the case of a lump removal or biopsy, this test can determine the type of mass and indicate whether removal was complete.