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  • Author or Editor: Joy A. Delamaide Gasper x
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Objective—To evaluate the signalment, neurologic examination and imaging findings, and outcome in dogs treated medically or surgically for osseous-associated cervical spondylomyelopathy (OACSM).

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—27 client-owned dogs.

Procedures—Medical records for dogs with OACSM (diagnosis made in 2000 through 2012) were reviewed. Collected data included signalment, neurologic examination findings (graded from 0 [normal] to 5 [tetraplegia]), imaging findings, treatment, and outcome. From MRI and CT images, measurements were obtained for subjective grading of spinal cord compression.

Results—Among the 27 dogs, the median age was 2 years; there were 15 Great Danes, 3 Mastiffs, 3 Newfoundlands, and 6 other large-breed dogs. For medically treated dogs (n = 7), the median initial neurologic grade was 2; for surgically treated dogs (20), the median initial neurologic grade was 3. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed dorsolateral spinal cord compression in 22 dogs and lateral spinal cord compression in 5 dogs. Dogs with more severe compressions were slightly more likely to undergo surgical than medical treatment. Median survival time of medically treated dogs was 43 months, and that of surgically treated dogs was 60 months. Fifteen of 19 dogs treated surgically had improved neurologic grades at 4 to 8 weeks after surgery and had a good to excellent long-term outcome.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Surgical treatment of dogs with OACSM resulted in neurologic improvement and was associated with a good long-term outcome. For dogs that received medical treatment, neurologic deterioration continued but some patients did well for several years. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2014;244:1309–1318)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Case Description—An approximately 8-month-old female Miniature Lop rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) was evaluated because of an acute onset of progressive paraparesis.

Clinical Findings—The rabbit was ambulatory paraparetic, and results of neurologic examination were consistent with a myelopathy localizing to the T3-L3 spinal cord segments. Evaluation with CT myelography revealed focal extradural spinal cord compression bilaterally at the level of the articular process joints of T12-L1.

Treatment and Outcome—A Funkquist type A dorsal laminectomy was performed at T12-L1, and the vertebral column was stabilized with pins and polymethylmethacrylate-based cement. Multiple vertebral synovial cysts were confirmed on histologic evaluation of the surgically excised tissues. The rabbit was nonambulatory with severe paraparesis postoperatively and was ambulatory paraparetic at a recheck examination 7 weeks after surgery. Fourteen weeks after surgery, the rabbit appeared stronger; it walked and hopped slowly but still fell and dragged its hindquarters when moving faster. Thirty-seven weeks after surgery, the neurologic status was unchanged.

Clinical Relevance—Although thoracolumbar myelopathy in rabbits is commonly secondary to vertebral fracture, vertebral synovial cysts should be considered a differential diagnosis for rabbits with slowly progressive paraparesis. Decompressive surgery and stabilization can result in a good outcome for rabbits with this condition.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association