Advanced equine diagnostics — magnetic resonance imaging

Isabell Riley
October 2018

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) has become one of the most valuable pieces of diagnostic equipment in equine practice. Both standing and general anaesthetic units are available in the UK, and with growing popularity and public understanding, clinicians have an increased ability to utilise this modality. Considered ‘gold standard’ in terms of lameness diagnostics, MRI is non-invasive and has the capacity to enable precise diagnosis and treatment to be provided. MRI does not use ionising radiation and to date there has been no conclusive evidence to suggest any negative biological hazards associated with its use in patients or technicians. Ensuring the environment the unit is kept in is regulated, with minimal outside radiofrequency interference, and a clear gauss line adhered to, MRI can be calibrated via external services electronically or manually by appropriately trained staff. Patient care and procedural understanding are crucial elements of the veterinary nurse's role; identifying possible complications and implementing nursing interventions appropriately are vital to the successful management of the equine MRI patient.

Advanced equine diagnostics — magnetic resonance imaging
Advanced equine diagnostics — magnetic resonance imaging

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