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Radiology Daily
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The Rosenthal Imaging and Treatment Center at the University of Pennsylvania has a 1.5-tesla MRI scanner, a 16-slice CT unit, a linear accelerator for radiation therapy, an anesthesia prep room where a board-certified anesthesiologist oversees a staff of technicians, and of course a patient recovery suite.

Did we mention that it’s at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary MedicineWilfried Mai, DMV, PhD, chief of radiology at the school, told DOTmed News:

The center initially had MRI and radiation therapy. Then a few years ago we added a new CT machine. We also have staffing and rooms to provide our own anesthesiology.

Just about any kind of imaging that is done on humans is also done on pets these days—and often with the same types of machines. Some ultrasound and X-ray units are specially designed for animals, but veterinary imaging centers use MRI and CT scanners made for humans.

Some veterinary offices offer PET/CT scans and interventional radiology procedures. Kimberly Agnello, DVM, an assistant professor of small-animal surgery at Penn, said veterinary radiologists using CT angiography or other advanced imaging guide cancer surgery for pets. “We can now make smaller incisions and get animals back to their normal activity time sooner,” Dr. Agnello said. “Recovery is better too.”

A dog MRI costs about $1,200 to $2,000. Pet insurance, which is becoming increasingly popular, usually covers it. Otherwise, pet owners pay out of pocket—which may be why Jim Stuppino, president and CEO of AnimalScan, said it’s easier to get paid for pet imaging than for human imaging.

AnimalScan, based in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, has six locations in New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, and California. Stuppino plans to open nine more. All offer animal MRI imaging only. Stuppino buys refurbished mobile MRI units and parks them permanently at his practices.

“It’s been a tremendous growth for us over a short period of time,” he said. “The volumes can range from 20 to 25 MRI scans a month, and some of our centers do over 100 scans a month, based on the market and area.”

Related CME seminar (up to 17 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™): Emergency Radiology

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