Australia’s fastest 16 slice veterinary computed tomography (CT)
Mobile X-ray allowing radiographs to be taken on the floor for patient comfort
X-ray fluoroscopy to produce moving X-ray images live during surgery
The latest ultrasound for gastro-intestinal, renal and other soft-tissue studies in internal medicine
A wide range of endoscope capabilities
3D printing of volume rendered CT models for surgical planning
Access to 1.5 Tesla MRI
Southpaws are proud to have the fastest CT scanner in Australia for animals, which allows more effective diagnosis of cancer and other diseases. CT scans can be performed in just 3-5 seconds, minimising the time patients are under anaesthesia. Patients also benefit from 3D volume rendering, offering complex spatial information from a single scan. We can print surgical sites as models on our 3D printer. Our imaging equipment is world class and would be entirely at home in the world’s best human hospitals.
Our specialist surgeons Dr Charles Kuntz and Dr James Simcock have extensive experience with computed tomography – conducting and interpreting thousands of CT scans in their careers and presenting findings from essential cases in the scientific literature.
Your pet does not need to be referred to us for your veterinarian to make use of our CT imaging facility and our interpretation services. We will offer opinions on any medical imaging to primary care veterinarians over the phone free of charge. When patients get referred to us, CT imaging will be conducted, and the patient can undergo immediate surgery with the benefit of only undergoing one anaesthetic procedure.
“In some cases of diseases affecting the Central Nervous System or inflammatory conditions affecting the brain, MRI may be the preferred modality over CT. Southpaws have access to an external 1.5 Tesla MRI. All patients are placed under general anaesthesia for the scan and the results are digitally transferred back to Southpaws for a full review.”
Southpaws diagnostic imaging capabilities naturally include digital Xray. Digital Xrays allow veterinarians to examine a wide range of orthopaedic and soft-tissue structures in dogs and cats just like in human medicine. Digital Xrays are fast and provide high resolution results immediately. Being digital means that Xray files can be examined in our software systems and also communicated directly to referring vets as we diagnose your pet’s condition. At Southpaws we use a portable Xray machine so that we can take images either in our dedicated Xray laboratory, in open space while your pet is being anaesthetised or even in the surgical suite. Our Xray machine also allows us to take Xrays while your pet is lying on the floor – this has the advantage of being able to make your pet more comfortable during the process. Some Xrays for some patients may require mild sedation to ensure that your pet does not move during the procedure. Digital Xrays are an excellent diagnosis tool for examining all orthopaedic structures and also many soft tissues in cats and dogs. With digital Xray most foreign objects can also be detected. Digital Xray is commonly used in conjunction with ultrasound which provides a live moving ultrasound image of many soft tissues and internal organs and Computed Tomography which can be used to examine all of these structures in greater resolution in incremental distances providing a 3D picture of your pet.
Xray Fluoroscopy provides a continuous series of low dose Xray images allowing veterinarians to see soft tissue and orthopaedic body parts moving in action. XR Fluoroscopy is typically used live in the surgical theatre and can be used for such conditions and treatments as breathing and swallowing disorders such as a collapsed trachea, the monitoring of blood vessels in real time and the movement of limbs after placement of surgical implants or other surgical procedures to confirm the success of the surgery. XR Fluoroscopy is commonly used in conjunction with keyhole surgery to place stents in the trachea, urethra and even in heart surgery. XR Fluoroscopy is just one of the many ways in which Southpaws invests in the latest technology to aid in the diagnosis and treatment of your beloved family pets.
Endoscopy / Arthroscopy / Laparoscopy
Video endoscopy allows veterinarians to look inside your pet’s body without making a surgical incision. Scopes often consist of fibre optic digital camera combined with mechanical surgical tools (cutters, grabbers) encased in a thin tube. At Southpaws we have a large number of flexible and rigid scopes combined with high definition digital cameras and lights to obtain the best possible information to aid our diagnosis. Our internal medicine department use these scopes to examine the gastrointestinal, upper respiratory and urinary tract and nasal cavity. If your pet has ingested a foreign body a scope may be used to extract it, so that it may be possible to avoid open wound surgery.
Our surgeons also use these scopes for examination, diagnosis and treatment of conditions affecting joints (shoulder, elbow and knee), the thoracic cavity and the abdominal cavity. These key hole procedures are generally less invasive compared to open procedures meaning less discomfort and more rapid recovery for your pet. Joint arthroscopy is the Gold Standard in veterinary surgery for many problems affecting the shoulder, elbow and knee as these issues can be interrelated and arthroscopy can quickly identify which problems need to be addressed.
Ultrasonography is invaluable to veterinary medicine. It is a minimally invasive technique that images the internal organs of your pet. Southpaws have invested in the Esaote MyLabTwice, a human medicine ultrasound used extensively by our Internal Medicine Department. The ultrasonic probe gets placed on the skin of the patient (with conducting gel), and the waves are detected back at the probe as they reflect off internal tissues and organs.
Ultrasound gets used for gastrointestinal studies and to investigate the liver, spleen and kidneys, to find tumours and to examine adrenal glands, lymph nodes and the urinary system. With the MyLabTwice we can do Fine Needle Aspirate sampling of tissues without the need for anaesthetising the patient. The ultrasound imaging guides the FNA in real time, taking micro samples of tissue with no significant bleeding. Cats or dogs undergo minimal sedation; owners are allowed to be present to comfort the patient. The MyLabTwice includes many technologies for imaging enhancement including direct visualisation of blood echoes, and high-performance contrast-enhanced ultrasound imaging.