Treatment Type: Diagnostic Procedures
Rated for: English Springer Spaniel
Posted Apr. 1, 2018
Liver disease is usually diagnosed based on clinical signs, results of blood biochemistry results and ultrasound findings. Some types of liver diseases such as copper storage hepatopathy or many liver cancers, will be highly suspected based on other results, but require a liver biopsy for a final diagnosis.
There are some risks associated with liver biopsies.
1. Liver disease can affect the coagulation ability of the body- i.e. the ability of the blood to clot. Therefore it is recommended that dogs have a coagulation test completed before a biopsy is undertaken. The biopsy could cause the dog to bleed uncontrollably.
2. Biopsies should be guided by ultrasound or undertaken during surgery or minimal invasive surgery (i.e. laproscopically). They should not be taken "blind". There is the risk of puncturing the gall bladder, bile ducts intestines or pancreas!