What is a board-certified veterinary internist?
An internist is a board-certified veterinary internal medicine specialist who has undergone additional training [one-year internship and three-year residency] in the diagnosis and treatment of various disease such as immune-mediated diseases, resistant infections, gastrointestinal problems [inflammatory bowel disease], disturbances with the endocrine system and many others conditions.
Preparing for Your Appointment
- Before making an appointment with our specialists, you must request a referral from your pet’s primary veterinarian. He or she may call us or use the referral portal system available on our website.
NOTE: ***A referral is not necessary if seeing our urgent care service***
- Please ask your primary doctor to fax/email your pet’s records prior to the appointment and/or bring a copy of all pertinent information [e.g. records, radiographs, blood test results etc].
- We recommend fasting your pet for 12 hours prior to the appointment to avoid interference with certain diagnostics [e.g. certain types of bloodwork, abdominal imaging etc]; however, pets with certain conditions [for example, diabetes mellitus, history of low blood sugar or very young] should not be fasted. Please call us prior to the appointment if you have any questions/concerns about fasting your pet.
What to Expect During Your Appointment
- The internal medicine veterinary assistant will first greet you, collect vitals on your pet and ask some routine health questions.
- The internist will then perform a detailed physical examination, listen to your concerns, ask additional questions and discuss the next steps.
- We pride ourselves in timely communication with your pet’s primary doctor and will call them the same day of the appointment with an update and send paperwork within 24 hours.
- If diagnostics are sent to outside laboratories, we will call you with results as soon as available and reviewed.
- We will always have your pet best interest at heart and may refer you to another hospital if a particular diagnostic modality or treatment option is recommended but currently not offered at Skyline Veterinary Specialists (for example, advanced imaging such as CT with contrast, MRI).
How to reach us during regular business hours, after-hours and on weekends:
- Regular business hours: Call our main line at 704-672-5590 or send an email to the internal medicine service. Messages received after 5 pm will be returned the following day.
- After-hours (after 5 pm): Ask to speak with a doctor or assistant (urgent care available until 6 pm), leave a message or send an email.
- Weekends: We currently do not offer weekend hours. Please direct your calls to your primary doctor or to one of the hospitals that we recommend for after-hours care:
Some conditions we commonly see:
- Anemia [low red cell count] and other blood disorders
- Chronic sneezing, nasal discharge or coughing
- gastrointestinal problems (vomiting, diarrhea, weight loss)
- Endocrine conditions
- Immune-mediated diseases
- Kidney disease
- Pancreatic and liver disease
- Suspected cancer
Treatment options and procedures currently referred to other hospitals:
- CT/contrast or MRI
- Other specialty services (neurology, oncology, etc)
- Rhinoscopy (endoscopic evaluation of the nasal cavity)
Procedures that we currently provide:
- Bone marrow aspirates and biopsies.
- Bronchoscopy/tracheoscopy (endoscopy of the respiratory tract)
- Colonoscopy (endoscopy of the large bowel)
- Endoscopic removal of gastric (stomach) foreign bodies
- Esophagoscopy (endoscopy of the esophagus)
- Feeding tube placement (nasogastric, esophagostomy, PEG)
- Laryngoscopy (endoscopy of the throat and voice box)
- Gastroduodenoscopy (endoscopic assessment of stomach and early duodenum) with biopsies
- Tracheal/bronchial wash (collection of airway fluid)
- Ultrasound of the abdomen, chest and neck
- Ultrasound-guided needle aspirates or biopsies