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Scopes, Scopes, and more Scopes

Microscopes, Otoscopes, Ophthalmoscopes, and Stethoscopes
What They Are and Why We Use Them

Scopes, scopes, scopes, galore. We have many uses for several different types of scopes here at Hazel Dell Animal Hospital. A basic definition of a scope is a device that is used for looking or scanning. They are all used to assist our Veterinarians and our staff. If you happen to see a few of these around the hospital, you will now understand more of what they are being used for. Feel free to ask us questions about any of them.

      Microscopes are probably the easiest to identify here in the hospital and we use these to look at stool, urine, blood, or other various samples. Ear Cytology, for example could tell you if your pet has yeast, bacteria, or ear wax in their ears. These findings can help tell Dr. McDaniel or Dr. Bassett whether or not it is necessary to treat your pet’s ears.  Examining a fecal sample for intestinal parasites is a very helpful tool as there are some parasites that humans can pick up and others that can make your pets very sick. Many times we can know if there is a problem before you leave the hospital so that medications can be given same day. Looking at skin cytology to check for fungal, bacterial, or yeast infections help to identify skin problems and help to get your pets feeling better faster. Urine samples are brought in usually when a pet has a possible urinary tract infection and it is also looked at under the microscope.

       An Otoscope is a tool that is used to look inside the ears. As a part of an exam, your pet’s ears will be looked at to be sure there is no infection.  Looking down to the eardrum can also help determine if there is any defect inside the ear that would be difficult to determine by looking without a scope. It is also a safer way to look down the ears as the ear cone is not abrasive.  After the exam, ear cytology can be helpful in determining if medications are needed.  If you are not sure if your pet has an ear infection, please call and stop by and we can help make sure your pet is healthy.

       Another big part of a veterinary exam here at Hazel Dell Animal Hospital is an eye exam.  Dr. McDaniel and Dr. Bassett will look at each of the eyes to check for changes or defects. An Ophthalmoscope is what allows them to look more in-depth at your pet’s eyes.  At home, if you see redness, discharge, or squinting, it may be time to call us.  Changes in the retina, ulcers, and nuclear sclerosis are just some of the few items that our veterinarians would notice and be able to help with. The Ophthalmoscope is just one of the tools that would be used to help diagnose a problem. If you see them in the exam room, you will now know what instrument the doctors are using to allow for the best care for your dog or cat. 

A Stethoscope is an invaluable tool that evaluates the heart, lungs, and also gastrointestinal sounds.  Our doctors and our nurses will use a stethoscope to listen for abnormalities and to see what is normal for your pet. We are looking for heart murmurs and heart defects as well as harsh sounds in the lungs. Many horse vets listen for changes in normal sounds in the gastrointestinal tract. We also will keep our stethoscopes close by during surgical/anesthetic procedures to ensure that your pet continues to have normal heart and lung sounds.  This is an invaluable tool that can help with diagnosis and lead to proper treatment and your pet feeling his or her best.

We use many tools here within the hospital in order to help your pets stay healthy. Our patients do not talk to us so sometimes we need these diagnostic tools to aid in the diagnosis for treatment. If you ever have a question about any of them, please let us know and we are happy to explain them to you. 


written by Danielle Fuller ~ RVT



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