Our hospital is equipped with a complete, diagnostic laboratory that allows us to measure several laboratory values, with results often available in a few minutes. Tests that cannot be performed at the hospital are sent out to veterinary diagnostic laboratories throughout the country.
By performing some basic blood tests, our veterinarian’s can gather information concerning the health and well being of your pet. Two common blood tests performed are the complete blood count and the blood chemistry panel.
The complete blood count consists of several tests that evaluate the number and type of blood cells in the circulation. The blood chemistry panel surveys many of the organ systems of the body (most common are kidney function and liver function) and provides information on how they are functioning.
Heartworm testing, complete blood count, blood chemistry panel, urinalysis and fecal examinations are many of the common laboratory tests. Below are short descriptions of some the tests.
Complete Blood Count (CBC)
CBC measures the number of red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets in a sample of blood. The numbers of each type of cell provides information to help diagnose anemia, infections and leukemia. If your pet is undergoing treatment for a condition, a complete blood count can help us monitor how your pet is responding to the treatment.
Blood Chemistry Panel
While most of our blood chemistry panels are sent to a diagnostic laboratory, we have the capability to perform them at our hospital if we need the results sooner.
A blood chemistry panel measures electrolytes, enzymes, and chemical elements of your pet’s blood. Included in a Chem Panel are important components such as calcium and These measurements help us determine how your pet’s organs, such as kidneys, pancreas, and liver, are functioning. Blood chemistry panels help diagnose and treat illness, as well as monitor your pet’s response to treatment. A blood chemistry panel is recommended to screen for potential problems and risks before anesthesia is administered.
Laboratory testing of your pet’s urine can help detect the presence of specific substances that normally do not appear in urine, including protein, sugar, white blood cells or blood. Measuring the dilution or concentration of urine can also help us diagnose illness. Urinalysis can be helpful in diagnosing urinary tract infections, diabetes, dehydration, kidney problems and other medical conditions.
There are various reasons why we will do a fecal examination. Fecal examinations will allow us to look under the microscope for diseases, including difficulties in digestion, internal bleeding and pancreas disorders.
Most importantly, fecal examinations confirm the presence of internal parasites, including roundworm, hookworm, whipworm, tapeworm and giardia. A fecal examination should be done annually as a part of the well pet exam. The fecal examination is done at a veterinary laboratory and results are returned usually within 24 hours.