The Pulse Of Veterinary Medicine

Vet-To-Vet Conversation With IDEXX

Alison Birken, DVM

Dr. Alison Birken is a small animal veterinarian, wife, mother of three, and a sister to three siblings. Over the past six years, she has dedicated her life to building and operating an animal hospital in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, accomplishing a lifelong goal. In addition, along with her sisters (Katie, a pediatrician and Carrie, a fashion stylist), she is a co-founder of Forever Freckled, a website dedicated to helping people with pets, children, and everyday lifestyle. Nothing brings Dr. Birken more joy than helping pets and their parents with wellness and healthy living.


How Making the Switch to Fecal Antigen Testing Improved My Practice

Intestinal parasite infections are common everywhere and even more so in dogs living in Fort Lauderdale, Florida where I own my small veterinary practice. For years, I evaluated and diagnosed pets with in-house fecal flotation with centrifugation but always saw variability in my test results, misdiagnosis of parasites, and false negative results. Recognizing the importance of accurately diagnosing intestinal parasites, I made the change from in-house fecal flotation tests with centrifugation to fecal antigen testing and fecal flotation with centrifugation at the reference lab. This transition drastically increased the number of patients I diagnose with intestinal parasites. Because of this, I now feel confident that I am practicing the best quality medicine.