Southern Animal Referral Centre

Digital Veterinary Radiography

Veterinary Digital X-RayOur 24 hour emergency vet hospital is fully equipped with a digital CR radiography system. We were one of the first veterinary hospitals and 24 hour emergency vet hospitals in Victoria to move to a digital x-ray processing system for companion animals. Cats and dogs visiting our 24 hour emergency vet hospital can have an x-ray taken without the need for x-ray film.

Computed radiography, or CR for short, uses a special type of x-ray plate along with a plate scanner. Traditionally x-ray plates contained a film which was removed and processed manually in a dark room. A CR system scans the plate in a special x-ray plate scanner to remove this step. CR then transforms the x-ray image to a digital image on a computer. This image is stored in a special format for medical diagnostic images. The process takes around 60 seconds to obtain an image.

The use of CR means that x-ray films no longer need to be developed in a time consuming and potentially messy process involving chemical baths and dark rooms.

The digital images produced can also be manipulated and enhanced to show up specific structures and areas of interest. This removes significant problems experienced with underexposure or overexposure of an x-ray film in the past. An incorrect exposure has historically led to a second x-ray being required. This outcome forced an additional x-ray exposure, placing staff and your pet at greater risk, as well as consuming considerable extra time.

In a pet emergency it is essential that the emergency vet does not waste time either developing images or re-taking images. Our emergency vet staff can quickly and effectively take digital x-rays and spend more time talking to you about your animal emergency.

Images are available at all key computer viewing stations around the hospital, meaning that x-ray films will now never be lost and precious time will not be spent searching through archives. X-rays can also be transferred in digital format to your referring veterinary hospital.

Your regular veterinary hospital may have a PACS system which allows direct transfer of the images between one veterinary hospital and another. Our 24 hour emergency vet hospital is able to accept images in DICOM format which ensures high quality images of your pet are used to inform treatment.