Sometimes, the only way to treat your pet's health problems is with surgery. Thanks to modern technology, however, we have tools that allow us to perform operations with as little discomfort or harm to your pet as possible. One of these tools is the endoscope.

What is a Veterinary Endoscope?

An endoscope is made up of a very tiny camera and light affixed to the end of a flexible tube. The tube can be passed into a pet's mouth or anus while he or she is under anesthesia.

Endoscopy allows us to go into any body orifice without surgery, reducing the pain and complications that your pet experiences. The camera gives our doctors the ability to see inside the area being studied. We can attach a small tool to the end of the endoscope to complete a biopsy or even retrieve an object your pet may have eaten.

EndoscopyAlso available is rigid endoscopy (or an endoscope with a rigid tube). A rigid scope is useful for procedures such as removing a cheatgrass from a female dog’s nose or flushing a stone from a dog’s bladder.

Endoscopic Veterinary Surgery

Intermountain's veterinarians can use endoscopes to perform surgical procedures such as:

  • Spays and neuters
  • Exploratory surgery
  • Small tumor removal

Surgeries done with an endoscope greatly reduce a pet's recovery time since trauma to the animal's body is minimized.

Types of Endoscopic Procedures

Intermountain Pet Hospital's endoscopy suite enables us to provide several different endoscopic procedures, including:

  • Laparoscopy—Examination of the abdominal cavity
  • Thoracoscopy—Examination of the lungs and chest cavity
  • Gastrointestinal endoscopy—Studies involving the mouth, esophagus, stomach, and small and large intestines
  • Arthroscopy—Procedures involving examination and treatment of joints
  • Vaginoscopy—Examination of the female reproductive organs
  • Rhinoscopy—Examination of the nasal passages
  • Otoscopy—Examination of the ear canals

What to Expect with Endoscopic Procedures

For all anesthetized procedures, we run diagnostic blood and lab work to ensure your pet has no underlying issues. If complications arise, we can reschedule once we are confident your pet is able to tolerate the anesthesia and procedure.

Prior to endoscopy, your pet will receive pain medication that allows him or her to relax and be comfortable. We ensure that your pet feels as little pain as possible.

During any procedure involving anesthesia, a nurse will monitor any and all changes in your pet's vital signs. If any changes occur, the nurse will inform the veterinarian immediately. This ensures that any issues are quickly addressed and corrected.

Once your pet has recovered and can go home, we'll give you detailed post-surgical care instructions and will schedule follow-up appointments as needed.

For more information on our endoscopic procedures, contact us.