This is a highly technical area of veterinary medicine. For an accurate assessment you need a person with an extensive amount of training and experience coupled with the latest equipment.
Whenever we perform an ultrasound it is done by a specialist in the field called a radiologist. This means this person is a veterinarian that only does radiology and ultrasound. After regular veterinary school a person that wants to be certified as a specialist in radiology (called Board Certified) has to spend an additional 4-5 years of study.
Our radiologist comes to our practice and performs the procedure in our office. We get the advantage of a specialist without having to drive to a university or specialty center. We get the report immediately and will go over it in detail.
This is typical of a report we get on a dog’s abdomen. This dog has liver cancer. Prior to the advent of ultrasound we had to do an expensive and painful exploratory surgery to get similar information. We have the best of both worlds with ultrasound due to less expense and it is non-invasive.
Here are the ultrasound pictures that go along with this report. It is one of the lobes of the liver. The tumor is demarcated by the yellow arrows.
The heart is a very common area to perform an ultrasound (called an echocardiogram)
Here is the report that goes with this echocardiogram