Radiology Topics

How can a veterinarian maximize the quality of a consult from a veterinary radiologist?

  1. Take well positioned and well exposed high quality radiographs with proper labeling.  Sedate if you need to; some radiographs are impossible to obtain properly without heavy sedation.
  2. Before you finalize a radiographic exam in your imaging workstation, ensure all the images are facing the proper direction from the start, just like we hang radiographs on a light box.  Although the radiologists can rotate and flip images after they are received, in some instances flipping one image results in flipping of all the other images, and this back and forth is extremely distracting.  
  3. Send us only the images you are interested in having interpreted.  Extraneous images can be distracting.  It forces us to spend all of our time organizing images instead of interpreting them.
  4. Provide a clear and concise history.  Two or three sentences are usually fine; please do not send us the entire patient record.
  5. Mention any specific concerns you have about the images in the history.  For fear of biasing the radiologist, some veterinarians don’t tell us about a specific area of concern on the images.  We understand where you are coming from, but for the most part we’d prefer to here all of your concerns from the start to make sure we initially address them in the report.  
  6. Provide initial feedback to the radiologist after you receive your results.  If you feel there is disagreement between your radiologist’s report and the patient’s problems, let us know and we will do our best to help.
  7. Provide follow up information to the radiologist, when you have a final diagnosis.  We learn from both our successes and mistakes.