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Open Access Highly Accessed Open Badges Research article

The use of micro-computed tomography in the diagnosis of dental and oral disease in rabbits

Hiroshi Sasai*, Hiroyuki Iwai, Daisuke Fujita, Eiko Seto and Yuki Izumi

Author Affiliations

Kitasuma Animal Hospital, Hyougo, 9-5-8 Yokoo Suma-ward, Kobe City 654-0131, Hyogo, Japan

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BMC Veterinary Research 2014, 10:209  doi:10.1186/s12917-014-0209-4

Published: 5 September 2014



The aim of this study was to investigate the use of a newly developed micro-computed tomography (micro-CT) system for the diagnosis of oral pathologies in small animals, using the rabbit as a model. The diagnosis of dental diseases in rabbits is usually based on oral endoscopy and radiographic imaging, but detailed pathological diagnosis using these methods is frequently difficult. Micro-CT was used in this study to address this challenge.


This study was conducted using 50 privately owned rabbits, presented to our hospital due to loss of appetite or difficulty feeding. Image recording times were 18 s in normal mode and 120 s in fine mode. The animals were maintained in the required position for scanning via the administration of sedatives. Micro-CT captured with a slice thickness of 60¿120 mm has excellent spatial resolution, and is suitable for the clinical diagnosis of dental diseases in rabbits weighing 1¿3 kg.


Micro-CT can yield more detailed data than radiography or conventional CT. This study determined that this novel imaging modality can be utilized for the accurate assessment of dental and oral diseases in rabbits.

Computed tomography; Micro-CT; Dentistry; Rabbit