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Comparison of three radiographic methods for diagnosis of hip dysplasia in eight-month-old dogs

George Lust PhD1, Rory J. Todhunter BVSc, PhD, DACVS2, Hollis N. Erb DVM, PhD3, Nathan L. Dykes DVM, DACVR4, Alma J. Williams MS5, Nancy I. Burton-Wurster PhD6, and James P. Farese DVM, DACVS7,8
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  • 1 James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853.
  • | 2 Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853.
  • | 3 Department of Population Medicine and Diagnostic Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853.
  • | 4 Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853.
  • | 5 James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853.
  • | 6 James A. Baker Institute for Animal Health, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853.
  • | 7 Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853.
  • | 8 Present address is Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32610.

Abstract

Objective—To compare the accuracy of the extended- hip radiographic (EHR) score, the distraction index (DI), and the dorsolateral subluxation (DLS) score for identifying hip dysplasia in dogs at 8 months of age.

Design—Cohort study

Animals—129 Labrador Retrievers, Greyhounds, and Labrador Retriever-Greyhound crossbreds.

Procedure—Radiography was performed when dogs were 8 months of age. Dogs were euthanatized at 8 to 36 months of age; hip dysplasia was diagnosed at the time of necropsy on the basis of results of a gross examination of the articular cartilage of the hip joints for signs of osteoarthritis.

Results—The EHR score, DI, and DLS score at 8 months of age were all significantly correlated with degree of cartilage degeneration at necropsy. Sensitivity and specificity of using EHR score at 8 months of age to diagnose hip dysplasia (scores > 3 were considered abnormal) were 38 and 96%, respectively; sensitivity and specificity of using DI (values > 0.7 were considered abnormal) were 50 and 89%; and sensitivity and specificity of using DLS score (scores ≤ 55% were considered abnormal) were 83 and 84%.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that specificities of the 3 methods for diagnosing hip dysplasia in dogs at 8 months of age were similar. However, the DLS score had higher sensitivity, indicating that there were fewer false-negative results. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2001;219:1242–1246)