Laboratory

We are proud to have one of the leading in-house laboratories in the country. It is run by our experienced and dedicated lab technician with veterinary nursing support.

 

 

 

We have access to the in-house lab day and night, 365 days a year. For urgent cases, blood results can be available rapidly to aid diagnosis and therefore implement appropriate treatment which is a great advantage when dealing with emergencies. In addition, we have access to world renowned laboratories which provide us with daily collections of samples.

 

 

 

Diagnostic tests that can be performed in our laboratory include:

  • Biochemistry profiles
  • Haematology profiles
  • FIV and FeLV testing in cats (Feline AIDs type  and Feline leukaemia viruses)
  • Electrolyte evaluation
  • Blood gases assessment
  • Blood sugar assessments for diabetics
  • Pancreatic lipase testing for diagnosis of pancreatitis
  • Feline T4 testing for diagnosis and monitoring of hyperthyroidism
  • Ionised calcium levels, e.g. for eclampsia in bitches
  • Cytology from aspirated samples
  • Fluid analysis including joint fluid, chest fluid and abdominal fluid
  • Bacteriology analysis – to include culture of organisms from swabs, fluids, urine etc and selection of appropriate antibiotics
  • Fungal cultures – looking for ringworm

Of course, not all diagnostic testing can be done in-house. Samples are couriered most nights to external laboratories, and the results are usually available the next working day. We have an excellent working relationship with these laboratories, and a team of Clinical Pathologists are always available to discuss the results. The laboratory that is most commonly used; Idexx Laboratories,  is accredited by the UK Government recommended accrediting body to UKAS International Standard ISO-IEC 17025:2005. It offers the biggest scope of laboratory testing in the country for veterinary diagnostic samples, is acclaimed worldwide and uses experts across Europe and the United States.

Preparation for blood tests:

Often we need a little preparation for blood tests to get the most accurate results. Common tests are as follows:

  • Cats with an overactive thyroid – If they are on medication – they may need to have it 4 to 6 hours before a blood sample. Please check with the surgery as it depends on which type they use. If they are on the Y/D diet or this is their first (diagnostic) blood sample, no preparation is needed.
  • Dogs’ thyroid tests for underactive thyroid: pre-starved for 12 hours for the very first test (i.e. no food for 12 hours before, but they must have access to water). For monitoring tests, it is unlikely that you will need to pre-starve but allow water. Give the medication 4-6 hours beforehand.
  • Cushings Disease in dogs (ACTH stimulation test): pre-starve for 12 hours, but allow water. If they are on medication, this should be given 6 hours before starting.
  • Blood sugar for animals that have NOT yet been diagnosed with conditions like diabetes: pre-starve for 12 hours; they must have water. Pre-existing diabetics should follow their normal routine as we are assessing this, i.e. FEED AS NORMAL, ALLOW ACCESS TO WATER.
  • Liver function tests (bile acids): pre-starve for 12 hours beforehand, allow access to water.

If you are unsure – please telephone us on 0121 705 3044.