MRI or NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance), in contrast to CT, does not use X-rays, but a strong magnetic field to create images. This field let vibrate water molecules in the patient (resonance). A computer turns these vibrations into images. With MRI, images can be obtained in 3 different directions (transverse, longitudinal and dorsal).
The technique is mainly used to visualize soft tissue as the high contrast can detect subtle pathological changes. As the study takes 45 minutes to 1.5 hours, the patient is under full anesthesia. Sometimes paramagnetic contrast agents are administered intravenously to visualize certain conditions.
The clinic has a 0.2 Tesla Hitachi Airis Mate MRI device to portray most conditions in small pets. Unlike foals and small ruminants, MRI research in adult horses is currently not possible in our clinic.
Animals with neurological complaints constitute the largest group of MRI patients. Thus, injuries can be detected from both the central (including brain tumors, inflammations) and peripheral nervous system (including nervous sheat tumors). MRI can also be used for screening for syringohydromyelia in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. In addition, MRI is used for assessing oncological disorders such as the extension of nasal tumors, retrobulbular processes, ... MRI is designed to detect joint injuries of the knee (eg cranial cruciate ligament rupture), shoulder (eg biceps rupture) and muscle injuries.
Appointments for magnetic resonance investigations can be made at the Small Animal Reception.