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  • Author or Editor: Emili Alcoverro x
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To describe the signalment, clinical findings, presumptive or definitive diagnosis, and outcome in cats with central cord syndrome (CCS).


22 cats.


Cats evaluated for CCS at 7 referral hospitals between 2017 and 2021 were included. Information retrieved from medical records included signalment, physical and neurological examination findings, diagnostic investigations, definitive or presumptive diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up.


Median age at presentation was 9 years. Two neuroanatomical localizations were associated with CCS: C1-C5 spinal cord segments in 17 (77.3%) cats and C6-T2 spinal cord segments in 5 (22.7%) cats. Neuroanatomical localization did not correlate with lesion location on MRI in 8 (36.3%) cats. The most common lesion location within the vertebral column was over the C2 and C4 vertebral bodies in 6 (27.2%) and 5 (22.7%) cats, respectively. Peracute clinical signs were observed in 11 (50%) cats, acute in 1 (4.5%), subacute in 4 (18%), and chronic and progressive signs were seen in 6 (40.9%) cats. The most common peracute condition was ischemic myelopathy in 8 (36.3%) cats, whereas neoplasia was the most frequently identified chronic etiology occurring in 5 (22.7%) cats. Outcome was poor in 13 (59%) cats, consisting of 4 of 11 (36.6%) of the peracute cases, 3 of 4 (75%) of the subacute cases, and 6 of 6 of the chronic cases.


Central cord syndrome can occur in cats with lesions in the C1-C5 and C6-T2 spinal cord segments. Multiple etiologies can cause CCS, most commonly, ischemic myelopathy and neoplasia. Prognosis depends on the etiology and onset of clinical signs.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association