Feasibility Of Computed Tomography In Awake Dogs With Traumatic Pelvic Fracture

Lee K, Heng HG, Jeong J, et al. 

Veterinary Radiology & Ultrasound 2012;53:412-416.

In veterinary medicine, general anesthesia or sedation is generally required to immobilize patients during computed tomography (CT) scanning. This may not be suitable in all patients because of risks of anesthesia. We evaluated the feasibility of pelvic CT examination in 14 awake animals with pelvic trauma. Physical restraint was applied by wrapping the patient in a towel and then taping to the CT table or by directly taping the patient to the CT table. The effect of patient positioning, cooperation on the CT table, preparation time for scanning, scanning time, frequency of repeat scans, image quality, and complications related to physical restraint were evaluated. Fractures were recorded and compared between radiography and CT. Ten of 14 dogs were scanned in lateral recumbency and four in sternal recumbency. All patients were cooperative with the exception of one that moved slightly during the scan. Both physical restraint methods were adequate for CT scanning. Patient preparation took less than 5 min while the scan time was typically less than 1 min. No repeat scans were required in any patient. The transverse CT image quality was good (10/14) or fair (4/14) for interpretation. When comparing the CT images to radiographs, more pelvic fractures were identified with CT than with radiography and a few patients were overdiagnosed based on radiographs. No complications or additional injuries associated with physical restraint were noticed.