Investigation of Respiratory Disease
Disease of the respiratory system can involve anywhere from the nostrils down to the alveoli (the end of the respiratory tree where gas exchange with the bloodstream occurs).
Diagnostic procedures we can perform include:
Rhinoscopy: examing the inside of the nostrils with a small endoscope allows us to visualise foreign bodies, infections particularly fungal infections and tumours affection the nostrils. Rhinoscopy also allows us to biopsy any unusual lesions in the nostrils to permit accurate diagnosis.
Bronchoscopy: performed using a small flexible endoscope (camera) which can be passed down the trachea and into the smaller airways. This permits sampling of airway secretions and identification and removal of foreign bodies. Bronchoscopy is also considered a gold standard diagnostic tool for evaluation of airway collapse such as collapsing trachea which is a common cause of chronic cough in small breed dog, such as the Yorkshire Terrier.
Fluoroscopy: is the use of real time Xray and can also be used to assess for airway collapse.
Radiography: the use of a high powered Xray generator allows us to take high quality thoracic xrays which enable accurate diagnosis of many thoracic diseases.
Thoracic ultrasound: ultrasound is now being used to identify thoracic tumours, pnemothorax, pleural effusions and can also be used to identify pulmonary oedema.