Digital radiology is routinely used to provide valuable information about a pet’s bones, abdominal organs, (stomach, intestines, liver, and spleen), respiratory tract (lungs), heart, and genitourinary system (bladder, kidneys, uterus, and prostate). It can be used alone or in conjunction with other diagnostic tools to provide a list of possible causes for a pet’s condition, identify the exact cause of a problem or rule out possible problems.
When a pet is being radiographed, an x-ray beam passes through its body and hits a digital plate. Images on the computer screen appear as various shades of gray and reflect the anatomy of the animal (as seen in the picture above). Bones, which absorb more x-rays, appear as light gray structures. Soft tissues, such as the lungs, absorb fewer x-rays and appear as dark or gray structures. Interpretation of radiographs requires great skill on the part of the veterinarian.