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•UNEXPLAINED WEIGHT LOSS
Weight loss is a common symptom of a variety of chronic illnesses. In some cases, the cause can be determined by routine laboratory testing performed by your primary care veterinarian. In other cases, more complicated diagnostic testing is needed. Our internal medicine specialists have the extensive training and experience needed to make the best diagnostic testing recommendations for your pet.
Chronic vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite and unexplained weight loss are common symptoms of gastrointestinal disease in dogs and cats. Our internal medicine specialists utilize abdominal radiography, abdominal ultrasound, gastrointestinal endoscopy, and specialized gastroenterology testing to diagnose and treat patients with gastrointestinal disorders.
Difficulty urinating, blood in the urine, changes in urinary habits, and recurrent urinary tract infections can all signal serious disease of the urinary tract. Advanced diagnostics including endoscopic evaluation of the urinary tract (urethroscopy/cystoscopy) are available through our internal medicine service.
Diseases of the thyroid, parathyroid, pancreas, and adrenal glands can result in serious symptoms that can impact your pet’s quality of life and life expectancy. We work with you and your pet to make the diagnosis and to manage hormone imbalances with the goal of a happier and healthier pet.
•BLOOD CELL DISORDERS
Anemia, platelet disorders, and abnormal white blood cell counts can be associated with a variety of systemic, autoimmune, and bone marrow disorders–some of which can prove life threatening. Our internal medicine specialists are trained and experienced in the diagnosis of these disorders.
As our pets age, the incidence of cancer increases. With early diagnosis, many types of cancer can be treatable. Our internal medicine specialists are experienced in the diagnosis of cancer and can guide you to best treatment options to optimize comfort and quality of life for your pet.
Kidney disease can occur acutely secondary to infection, toxins, and even cancer or may be the result of gradual decompensation over time. Ultrasound imaging and knowledgeable assessment of laboratory parameters are necessary to differentiate between acute and chronic disease and to guide best care.
For our pets, life in an urban setting can take a toll on lung health. Chronic disorders such as chronic bronchitis and asthma are common problems for dogs and cats living in the city but lung infection, allergies and respiratory cancer can occur regardless of where you live. If your pet exhibits symptoms that include chronic cough, difficulty breathing, or exercise intolerance, you should consider having him or her evaluated by one of our board certified internal medicine specialists.
Chronic sneezing, nasal discharge, bleeding from the nose, and upper airway congestion are not normal for dogs or cats—even during our allergy seasons. Persistent symptoms can signal serious underlying disease like nasal foreign bodies, fungal infections, or cancer. By utilizing state of the art diagnostics that include computed tomography, endoscopic evaluation of the nasal passageways, and tissue biopsy, we can uncover the underlying causes of these symptoms.
As for people, the incidence of heart disease increases with age. A new heart murmur, worsening of a previously diagnosed heart murmur, difficulty breathing, cough, and exercise intolerance are all possible symptoms of advancing heart disease. Early diagnosis of heart disease utilizing radiography, electrocardiograph (ECG), and echocardiography (cardiac ultrasound) in combination with sound treatment and monitoring recommendations can result in superior outcomes for patients with heart disease.
Autoimmune disease can be difficult to diagnose because these diseases can affect any part of the body, are difficult to differentiate from infection, and are complicated to manage . Our internal medicine specialists have extensive training in and experience with the diagnosis and treatment of autoimmune disorders.
The vital role of the liver in maintaining overall health can be undermined by abnormal blood flow, infection, inflammation, cancer, and damage from toxins. Advanced diagnostics that may include ultrasound, computed tomography, and biopsy are necessary to obtain accurate diagnosis and optimum treatment.
What Is Small Animal Internal Medicine?
Specialists in small animal internal medicine are specially trained in diagnosis and the treatment of chronic or complex health conditions. Patients with uncommon, difficult to manage, or multiple coexisting medical conditions can greatly benefit from the care of a veterinary internist. At Saint Francis Veterinary Specialists, our goal is to get your pet better and home as fast as possible through thorough diagnostics and effective treatments.
What Makes Saint Francis Special?
The SFVS internal medicine team collaborates with our other specialists to develop the best treatment plan for your pet. For example, if a sick pet is brought into SFVS and cancer is suspected, the oncologist becomes immediately involved in the case. Patients not only benefit from the internist’s foremost skills in diagnosis, but also they get faster treatment by experts in the condition.
What Does Board-Certified Mean?
Veterinary internal medicine professionals have specialized training and are board certified by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine (ACVIM). Internists receive supplementary training in diagnostic techniques, equipment (advanced imaging, ultrasound, endoscopy, CT scan, MRI, etc.), and laboratory testing.