Sterner Veterinary Clinic

821 N. Jefferson St.
Ionia, MI 48846


Senior Health and Wellness Blood Screen

Animals are experts at adapting to pain and illness and often don't show physical symptoms until a disease is in an advanced stage. Routine blood testing helps veterinarians detect illnesses and infections early. The blood-chemistry panel helps your veterinarian monitor your pet's organ function. Treatment is often less invasive and less costly when a disease is in its infancy, but more importantly, early medical intervention can save your pet's life and greatly increase the chance of a complete recovery.


Routine blood testing is necessary to establish a baseline against which your veterinarian can compare future test results. AAHA recommends young, healthy dogs and cats undergo blood tests at least annually. Senior pets should be tested at least every six months. Blood tests won't hurt your pet, but not having them done could.


Our chemistry blood panel includes the following tests: alkaline phosphatase (ALP), alanine transaminase (ALT), blood urea nitrogen (BUN), creatinine, glucose, total protein, and hematocrit (HCT or PCV).  ALT and ALP help us assess your pet's liver function while BUN and creatinine show how well your pet's kidneys are functioning.   Glucose values screen for diabetes.  Changes in total protein can be a sign of many diseases.  Hematocrit helps us to determine if your pet is anemic and can signify significant systemic diseases.   


Pre-Anesthetic Panel


This useful panel checks the primary organs involved in metabolism of anesthetic drugs, and alerts us to pre-existing conditions that may affect healing after a surgical procedure. This panel alerts us to any liver or kidney problems that a pet may have that would put him/her at increased anesthetic risk. It also acts as a screen for diabetes by indicating blood sugar levels. The Pre-Op panel also tells us about the animal's blood protein levels, and reports the animal's hematocrit (red blood cell count).


This in-house panel takes about 20 minutes to run. Pet owners are alerted to any abnormalities before an anesthetic procedure is performed. If any abnormalities are detected, the veterinarian may elect to postpone the procedure, take special precautions (like IV fluids, medications, etc.) or not perform the procedure at all. As with all blood panels, normal results are also always useful since they serve as baseline data to compare to in the event of future illness.