Radiology appointment FAQ


When are ultrasound appointments available?

Ultrasound appointments are generally available during specialty hours (Monday-Friday, 8 am-5 pm). However, in cases that are more urgent, other arrangements may sometimes be made.

How do I make an appointment?

Boundary Bay Veterinary Specialty Hospital strongly encourages animal owners to obtain a referral from their regular veterinarian whenever possible. This ensures the proper transfer of medical information, which is beneficial to the radiologist and will help your companion receive the best care possible.

A Boundary Bay Veterinary Specialty Hospital client care representative can be reached at 604-514-8383.

Are there special instructions for my pet prior to the appointment?

For all abdominal ultrasound procedures, it is essential that the patient has fasted for twelve hours and arrives with urine in the bladder to allow complete assessment of the abdomen.
For other procedures, we recommend fasting for 12 hours in case sedation is required.
Please call for instructions if your pet is diabetic.

What should I expect at the ultrasound appointment?

When you arrive for your appointment, please check in with the receptionist. The receptionist will let the radiology service know that you have arrived. The liaison will then meet with you and go over the requested procedure, consent forms, and estimated time for the procedure to be completed. During the ultrasound, you may wait in the hospital, or leave and return when the procedure is complete.

How long will the ultrasound take?

The entire procedure routinely takes 30-60 minutes; however, this is dependent on the type of ultrasound examination required and the severity of changes observed. If an aspirate or biopsy is required, your animal may be at the hospital for a few hours.

What patient preparation is required at the hospital?

The only patient preparation is the clipping of hair overlying the area to be scanned because hair traps air and hinders the transmission of sound into the chest or abdomen.

Will my pet need sedation?

Many ultrasound examinations require no sedation or anesthesia; however, you will be asked to pre-authorize the use of sedation if required. Sedation may be required if your animal will not stay still for the ultrasound or if an aspirate or biopsy is required.

How will I know if my pet needs additional procedures such as aspirates or biopsies?

Your family veterinarian may request that additional procedures such as aspirates or biopsies be performed if indicated by findings on the initial ultrasound. If aspirates or biopsies are warranted, the radiologist will discuss these recommended procedures with you; he or she will explain the risks and benefits of the procedures. If you wish to proceed with the recommendations, an estimate for these services will be provided, and a consent form for the procedures will be provided for you to sign.

When will I know the results?

In all cases, upon completion of the procedure, the radiologist will attempt to contact your regular veterinarian to discuss the findings. A written report will be sent to your veterinarian within 24 hours of the procedure. If your veterinarian has requested an ultrasound only (no additional procedures such as aspirates or biopsies), the radiologist generally will not consult with you or give you results. The radiologist will report the findings to your family veterinarian who will discuss all results with you.

How will I get the results of aspirates or biopsies?

If ultrasound guided aspirates or biopsies are performed, those samples are sent to the lab. The lab results will take a few days and will be faxed directly to your veterinarian. Please contact your family veterinarian for these results and any follow-up treatment.

What are the fees?

Fees are based on which procedures are required. Fees should have been discussed by your family veterinarian and/or by Boundary Bay Veterinary Specialty Hospital at the time you booked the appointment. We will discuss any fees with you prior to performing any additional procedures such as aspirates or biopsies. We require full payment at time of the procedure.