Using Thoracic Radiographs to Differentiate Pulmonary and Cardiac Diseases in Dogs and Cats

There are several reasons we take thoracic radiographs. These include a noted heart murmur, screening for metastatic disease, evaluating for clinical problems such as a fever of unknown origin or most commonly, for the evaluation of a patient coughing or having respiratory distress. In this article, we will review lung patterns and distributions of common pulmonary diseases while putting the clinical picture together. Radiographic Lung Patterns in Dogs and Cats  Lung patterns are simply the…

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Radiology View: What’s Your Read? 13-Week Lab with Lethargy & Cough

Radiology View: What’s Your Read? Patient Presentation A 13-week-old female Labrador Retriever mix presented to the cardiology service of MedVet Akron for evaluation. The owner stated that the puppy “hangs out with and acts like the old dogs” and describe her as being lethargic and coughing sporadically for the past week. The following radiographs were made. View the radiographs below and consider the following questions: What are your radiographic findings? What is your diagnosis?…

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Tips to Diagnose and Treat Accessory Pathway with Minimally-invasive Radiofrequency Catheter Ablation (Cardiac Ablation) in Dogs

Some dog breeds, such as Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, and brachycephalic breeds, are predisposed to a condition where an extra electrical connection between the upper and the pumping chambers in the heart persists during development. This extra electrical connection is known as an accessory pathway. In this article, we will review how to alleviate accessory pathway with minimally-invasive radiofrequency catheter ablation (cardiac ablation) in dogs. An accessory pathway can conduct electrical impulses from the upper…

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The Dyspneic Cat – Is it the Heart or Lower Airways?

Almost daily, I encounter a radiographic study of a cat in respiratory distress and commonly, the etiology is either congestive heart failure (CHF) or chronic small airway disease such as asthma.  Congestive heart failure has a predictable set of radiographic findings as described below and easier to discern from asthmatic cases.  Asthmatic cases can be challenging to diagnose radiographically as many appear normal or have a questionable bronchial lung pattern even in the most severely…

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Interventional Cardiology

Certain heart problems can be addressed in a minimally invasive manner by accessing the heart and internal blood vessels through peripheral blood vessels in the neck or leg, rather than opening the chest.  Fluoroscopy, which uses X-rays to create video images, provides real-time guidance of movements through the heart and vessels.  These procedures are the treatment of choice for many patients in human cardiology and are also available for pets.  Specific cardiac diseases treated by…

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