Penn Vet’s New Bolton Center Offers New MRI Service

Penn Vet’s New Bolton Center now offers a new MRI system designed specifically for obtaining high-quality images in horses.

The O-Scan is a high-resolution MRI system for diagnostic imaging using a low-field magnet. The MRI is capable of imaging extremities, from the foot to the hock (tarsus) or knee (carpus). The system, manufactured by Esaote, can also be used for other large animals.

“We have undergone in depth training, including validating specific protocols, and are ready to admit patients for MRI evaluation,” said Dr. Barbara Dallap Schaer, New Bolton Center Medical Director. “We are excited about this addition to our imaging services and look forward to working on challenging cases.”

The MRI will be useful primarily for soft-tissue injuries associated with lameness, but will detect bone injury as well, Dallap Schaer said. It provides functional (inflammatory) information, in addition to anatomic data.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a technique that uses a magnetic field and radio waves to create detailed images of the organs and tissues within the body. MRI provides additional information beyond radiography, computed tomography (CT), and ultrasound.

This new MRI replaces a previous system at New Bolton Center, installed in 2005 and used until recently. The acquisition of this new technology was funded in part by donor contributions.

All images will be reviewed by the clinician on the case, as well as a board-certified radiologist, with reports available within 48 hours.

The following studies will be available:

  • Foot, Bilateral feet. The single-foot imaging includes a limited study of the opposite foot or a limited study of the pastern
  • Proximal suspensory, Bilateral suspensory. Proximal suspensory includes a limited study of the opposite suspensory
  • Fetlock, Bilateral fetlock
  • Carpus, Bilateral carpus
  • Tarsus, Bilateral tarsus

The cost associated with an MRI scan includes a two-night stay at New Bolton Center, general anesthesia, the MRI scan and analysis, as well as other associated supply costs.

The comprehensive cost of an MRI exam will be $2,800 for the foot (includes a mandatory metal check) and $2,700 for any other single body part. For bilateral body parts, the estimate is $4,000.

Appointments will be available Tuesday through Thursday, and can be made through the Surgery Section by contacting Cindy Stafford (610-925-6125) or Karen Kohlmorgen (610-925-6140), or through the Sports Medicine Section by contacting Jackie Seila (610-925-6490).

Please contact Dr. David Levine at 610-925-6125 or with any questions regarding the new system.

(Photo available upon request.)

About Penn Vet

Penn Vet is a global leader in veterinary medicine education, research, and clinical care. Founded in 1884, Penn Vet is the only veterinary school developed in association with a medical school. The school is a proud member of the One Health Initiative, linking human, animal, and environmental health.

Penn Vet serves a diverse population of animals at its two campuses, which include extensive diagnostic and research laboratories. Ryan Hospital in Philadelphia provides care for dogs, cats, and other domestic/companion animals, handling more than 31,000 patient visits a year. New Bolton Center, Penn Vet’s large-animal hospital on nearly 700 acres in rural Kennett Square, PA, cares for horses and livestock/farm animals. The hospital handles more than 4,000 patient visits a year, while the Field Service treats nearly 36,000 patients at local farms. In addition, New Bolton Center’s campus includes a swine center, working dairy, and poultry unit that provide valuable research for the agriculture industry.

For more information, visit

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