Veterinary Clinic Neurology

MRI Neurologists

Neurological & Diagnostic Center

Can your pet not walk? Is its head tilting? Is it losing balance? Is it hurting around its back or neck? This may be due to a neurological issue. For over 15 years, MVS has been dedicated to the continued advancement of veterinary care. Our 24/7 hospital is staffed with ER doctors, dedicated technicians, and specialists including a full-time board-certified neurologist/neurosurgeon with 30 years of experience to give you and your pet the best in medical care.

What is an MRI?

Brain tumor in a dog (circled)

Magnetic resonance imaging, or MRI, is a very powerful radiological imaging tool that allows us to see structures deep in the body that other modalities cannot image. While CT can image bone well, MRI's can reveal tumors and other subtle lesions that might be difficult for a CT scan to reveal. MRI is essential for soft tissue, particularly for brain and spinal cord. This is why our Siemens Tesla 1.5 MRI is the very same MRI scanner that is used in human medicine.

How is an MRI done?

Dedicated anesthesia technician ensuring her patient is safe and warm

Just like us humans, the dog or cat is placed in a tubular electromagnetic chamber which produces a strong magnetic field that forces protons in the body to align with that field. This information is interpreted by the computer program to form various sets of images (sequences) to allow visualization of the body. This form of diagnostic evaluation is non-invasive and completely painless. Because motion will affect the images collected and it can take half to a full hour to obtain a full MRI, anesthesia is necessary. Also, blood analysis and radiographs of the lungs can be part of the preparation to ensure the patient is stable for anesthesia.

A dedicated technician will prepare and follow the anesthesia care during the entire procedure while the MRI technician will secure proper positioning and scanning. The neurologist is present during the MRI and thus can adjust what images need to be acquired for complete scanning and make an initial diagnosis before sending the scan to a radiology team for their interpretation. From beginning to full recovery, it can take two to three hours of dedicated technical and doctor care.

Why do an MRI?

Atlantoaxial subluxation in a Yorkshire Terrier shows stair-step looking spinal cord (circled). This can be fatal!

When a dog or cat has a neurological problem, symptoms can be very obvious, sudden and scary. These symptoms can manifest as paralysis on parts of the body, tremors, or seizures to name a few. MRI’s provides high-quality images with excellent detail and resolution of the entire nervous system of your pet and many other body parts, as in humans, such as joints, prostate, abdomen, muscles, and more. It’s an excellent diagnostic tool to collect information on your furry friend’s health. The form of diagnostic evaluation is non-invasive and completely painless. These images allow for our neurologist, doctors, and surgeons to collect information on your pet to help them to make the best a medical and sometimes surgical recommendations.

Who needs an MRI?

  • Pets with Seizures
  • Poorly Coordinated Gait (Ataxia) & Weakness (Paresis)
  • Poor Balance (Vestibular Symptoms)
  • Neck or Back Pain
  • Lameness
  • Abnormal Nasal Drainage or Swelling
  • Abdominal Imaging
  • Defining Tumor Characteristics & Boundaries
  • Lumbo Sacral Diseases
  • Spinal Cord Diseases
  • Encephalitis
  • and so much more...

How much does MRI cost?

Around the nation MRI's range from about $1,500 to over $5,000 depending on the state and the equipment used. At MVS we believe strongly in the quality of care and transparency in pricing. This is why prior to doing an MRI, we will administer an examination at a cost of $100. The exam fee is then applied as a credit toward an MRI if, after the exam, an MRI is deemed necessary. On average our MRI's range from about $2,400 to $2,600 including anesthesia and a radiology report.

Come in and request more information from our Board Certified Neurologist/Neurosurgeon.
We're open 24-7 / 365 Days a Year

To make an appointment please call
Call Now (305) 665-2820

When you call, a scheduling staff member will assist you. A referral to the Miami Veterinary Specialists can be requested by your veterinarian as well. If it is not possible to keep a scheduled appointment, please contact the scheduling staff at least 24 hours in advance. If you are going to arrive late, please contact the scheduling staff as soon as possible.