Thanks to a generous gift from Jeff Neu, the Flint Animal Cancer Center and the James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital, have a new, state-of-the-art Seimens Somaton Force CT scanner. It is the first of its kind in all of Colorado, human or veterinary medicine, and the first in a veterinary hospital west of the Mississippi.
“We’ve had a relationship with the FACC for nearly 10 years, since I brought my dog Lucy here for cancer treatment,” said Jeff Neu. “The people are amazing and give the best-in-the-world care. We believe in them and, to support their work, we’ve invested in updates to the facility, and now we need to update the equipment.”
SPEED AND PRECISION
The new CT scanner obtains images up to 10 times faster than conventional scanners, while keeping radiation doses low. Faster scan times provide a variety of benefits, including the ability to image more patients in a day. And because the machine can scan the entire body of a 50-pound dog in less than 30 seconds, in many cases, patients can be sedated rather than anesthetized. Precision technology combined with speed makes it possible to “digitally pause the heart” to reduce motion effects that make the images blurry, which provides radiologists with sharper pictures to read.
IMPACT ON PATIENT CARE
The powerful CT gives FACC clinicians a new tool to diagnose cancer, understand the extent of the disease, and intervene at the earliest possible time.
“Our new CT capabilities will provide more detailed information about our patients’ tumors, allowing us to help owners make the best treatment decisions possible,” said Dr. Susan Lana, oncology service chief. “We are just starting to explore the exciting new things we can learn.”
Current plans include using high-resolution capabilities to benefit oncology surgical planning, and our radiation oncology service will use the new CT images for treatment planning.
“I hope this technology will mean better outcomes for cancer patients,” said Neu. “I’m also excited about its potential for other areas of the hospital.”
According to Dr. Tim Hackett, interim associate dean of CSU’s Veterinary Health System, the CT provides opportunities to become leaders in new areas.
“We’ve never been able to see the heart like this – the detail is incredible,” said Dr. Brian Scansen, veterinary cardiologist. “With this machine, we can capture the heart in high resolution, which allows us to plan the right surgery or intervention for each patient. We think this is the future of surgical planning for heart disease.”
Other specialties look forward to using the technology for advanced trauma imaging, which is standard of care in human medicine, detailed images of the brain to support neurology cases, and more.
“We are grateful to the Neu family for their continued support of capital projects and investments in cutting-edge technology that allows us to lead the way in veterinary medicine,” said Hackett.