Internal Medicine Services
What is internal medicine?
Internal medicine deals with diagnosis and nonsurgical treatment of diseases of the internal organs. Each of our doctors has a special interest in different aspects of internal medicine. This enables us to provide pet owners access to a wide range of advanced diagnostic services and care.
Internal medicine care at Veazie Vet includes endocrine disorders such as thyroid, adrenal & pituitary disorders, as well as exocrine disorders, and immune system diseases. In addition, we treat cancer, infectious disease and disease of the intestinal tract. Dr. Cloutier and Dr. Tardiff both have a special interest in heart health.
Using a combination of digital x-rays, ultrasound, CT scan, endoscopy, and laboratory tests, we can help diagnose your pet and work with you to help them feel better again.
What internal medicine services are offered?
Cancer Care: Many types of cancer can be treated, or the quality of life improved, with chemotherapy. The decision whether or not to go forward with cancer treatments can be a difficult one and is one made by the owners with support from doctors
Heart Health & Cardiology: This includes: heart murmurs caused by valve disease, genetic abnormalities, masses and other heart diseases and their management. Dr. Cloutier and Dr. Tardiff have a passion for this area of medicine and can conduct full cardiac work-ups and heart surgery
Liver, Kidney & Urinary Tract Disease: As pets live longer, it is more common to see instances of liver and kidney failure. Our veterinarians can help you manage these diseases. In addition, urinary tract issues can impact overall health, including kidney and liver function.
GI (Gastrointestinal) Tract Disorders: Signs of a GI problem include vomiting and diarrhea. Gastroenterology hunts down the source of these problems, including inflammatory bowel disease (colitis, gastroenteritis) & parasites.
Infectious Disease: Infectious Disease are ones that can be passed from animal to people (zoonotic disease), from animal to animal, or from parasite to animal. Some of these include parvovirus, leptospirosis, kennel cough, tick born illness, calicivirus, feline herpes virus, feline AIDS, feline leukemia, toxoplasmosis, and cat scratch (bartonella).
Endocrine/Exocrine Disorders: These are diseases affecting the output of hormones and pheromones. Common Diseases include diabetes, hyperthyroid, Cushing’s or Addison’s disease, and pancreatic insufficiency.
Diagnostic imaging is a critical part of any veterinary clinic. It gives us the most information in the least invasive way for many diseases. We have a well trained staff and very good equipment to get the right image on the first try.
Radiology uses the fact that bodies are made up of varied material to illuminate structures. The whiter portions are more dense (bones, large organs etc.) the black portions are air (areas in the lungs, gas in the colon). Radiography works well looking at dense things (bones), but not as good at looking at less dense things (seeing the differences between tissues and organs).
Benefits of Digital x-ray systems
Shades of grey in digital imaging provide more detail than just black and white imaging, and allow for a thorough radiograph interpretation. Veazie Vet has a digital x-ray machine and a grey scale computer that allow us to pick up as much detail as possible. If our doctors have any questions about a radiograph, they are sent to a specialist to read. Results are usually received within hours versus days by mail.
Our digital dental x-ray that is used to take radiographs of pet’s teeth. Full mouth x-rays are taken before every dental to diagnose problematic teeth, ensure there are no teeth that need to be surgically extracted and that questionable teeth are in-fact in need of extraction. We can also use it to take radiographs of toes and paws because they are so small.
Endoscopy can be performed by any of the doctors. It is a way to view the interior of a hollow organ or passageway such as the throat or stomach. It turns the image into a video which we can see. This is a helpful tool to be able to visualize the back of the throat, take cultures, remove foreign material from the stomach or to visualize the inside of the stomach.
Cardiac and Abdominal Ultrasound
Ultrasound is used to visualize tissues such as: tendons, muscles, joints, vessels and internal organs. The probe produces a sound wave that travels through the fluid in tissues and organs and is translated into a visual image that we can see. It is a better tool for seeing the differences in tissues than x-ray and also shows us the motion and function of organs like the heart. Our ultrasound machine also saves digital images that can be easily sent via the internet to a specialist for a telemedicine consultation.
Cardiac ultrasounds (echocardiogram) are performed by Dr. Cloutier and Dr. Tardiff as part of a cardiac evaluation. Very few requires anesthesia or sedation. The cardiac ultrasound shows the doctors your pet’s heart function. We can visualize the valves, evaluate its size and assess its function. It can also take color flow doppler which illustrates the source of a heart murmur and how significant it is.
Abdominal ultrasounds are performed by Dr. McCaw, who is one of the most practiced ultrasonographers in the area. Ultrasound allows him and our other doctors performing the ultrasound to see inside pets without surgery and are typically done while the pet is awake. Some of the most commonly viewed organs are the liver, kidneys, spleen and bladder. It is possible to locate and diagnose problems such as: blockages, tumors, malformations, stones, and more. Dr Tardiff and Dr. Keene also perform ultrasounds regularly. Pregnancy ultrasounds can also be done to confirm the presence (but not the exact number) of feti.
We can also perform ultrasound guided biopsies to sample the tissue from a specific organ without having to do surgery. This is an anesthetic procedure that is minimally invasive and thereby reduces the risks and complications associated with getting a surgical sample from an organ.
Laboratory & Diagnostic Services
In House Laboratory Services
Our in house laboratory is one of our greatest and most used assets. We have the capability to run blood work and have results in a matter of minutes due to our partnership with Idexx Labs and the equipment they provide. We can diagnose:
- Kidney Disease
- Liver Disease
- Complete Blood Counts (CBC)
- Lyme Disease
- Feline Leukemia
- Heartworm Disease
Having such a convenient laboratory in house also allows us to run pre-operative blood profiles to screen for potential problems before an anesthetic is given. some of our non-blood tests that we run include:
- Fecal Tests
- Skin Scrapings
- Ear Cytologies
- Fine Needle Aspirates of Lumps
Outside (Reference) Laboratory Services
We also utilize a number of outside laboratories for specific tests. Some tests that we do send out include:
- Histologies (Biopsies)
- Thyroid Profiles
- Bladder Stone Analyses
- In-depth Blood Chemistries
Results from these tests are usually back within a few days, although some results can take up to 2 weeks or longer depending on the test being run.
Telemedicine gives us the ability to consult with veterinary specialists across the country via the internet. Images we can send include:
- Radiographs (x-rays)
- Endoscopic views
- CT Scans
We can send images to a specialist and get a response often later that same day. Quick answers allow for prompt treatment in critical cases.