To compare spinal cord-to-vertebral canal area ratios measured with CT between the cervical and thoracolumbar regions in French Bulldogs.
37 French Bulldogs presented to a referral hospital between 2016 and 2019.
The study was conducted as a retrospective observational study. Exclusion criteria were evidence of vertebral malformations or spinal cord compression at the sites where measurements were obtained and the presence of cervicothoracic or thoracolumbar transitional vertebrae or neurologic deficits. CT images were reviewed, and measurements were performed by 2 investigators. Measurements of the spinal cord and vertebral canal were made at the level of or immediately cranial to the midbodies of C5 and L1.
A 2-tailed, paired t test indicated that the mean spinal cord-to-vertebral canal area ratio differed significantly (P < .01) between C5 (0.726) and L1 (0.605). The ratio was lower in the thoracolumbar region, suggesting that the vertebral canal was relatively larger in this region.
The epidural space did not appear to be larger in the cervical than in the thoracolumbar region in this population of French Bulldogs, contrary to previous reports. The reason for the more severe deficits observed with thoracolumbar disk extrusion in this breed remains to be characterized.