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  • Author or Editor: Robert J. Bahr x
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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To determine outcome of and complications associated with prophylactic percutaneous laser disk ablation in dogs with thoracolumbar disk disease.

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—277 dogs.

Procedure—Medical records of dogs with a history of thoracolumbar disk disease in which the 7 intervertebral disks from T10-11 through L3-4 were ablated with a holmium-yttrium-aluminum-garnet laser inserted through percutaneously placed needles were reviewed. Complications and episodes of a recurrence of neurologic signs (eg, paresis or paralysis) were recorded. Owners were contacted by telephone for follow-up information.

Results—Nine of 262 (3.4%) dogs for which followup information was available had a recurrence of paresis or paralysis. Follow-up time ranged from 1 to 85 months (mean, 15 months); signs recurred between 3 and 52 months (mean, 15.1 months) after laser disk ablation. Acute complications occurred in 5 dogs and included mild pneumothorax in 1 dog, an abscess at a needle insertion site in 1 dog, and proprioceptive deficits in 3 dogs, 1 of which required hemilaminectomy within 1 week because of progression and severity of neurologic signs. One dog developed diskospondylitis.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that prophylactic percutaneous laser disk ablation is associated with few complications and may reduce the risk of recurrence of signs of intervertebral disk disease in dogs. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2003;222: 1733–1739)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To evaluate dogs with sudden acquired retinal degeneration syndrome (SARDS) for evidence of pituitary gland, adrenal gland, and pulmonary neoplasia and antiretinal antibodies and to evaluate dogs with neoplasia for antiretinal antibodies.

Animals—57 clinically normal dogs, 17 with SARDS, and 53 with neoplasia.

Procedure—Thoracic radiography, ultrasonography of adrenal glands, and contrast-enhanced computed tomography of pituitary glands were performed in 15 dogs with SARDS. Western blot analysis was performed on sera of all dogs; recoverin (23 kd) and arrestin (48 kd) retinal antibodies were used as positive controls.

Results—Neoplasia was not detected via diagnostic imaging in dogs with SARDS. Western blot analysis revealed bands in all dogs ranging from > 48 to < 23 kd. Prominent bands with equivalent or greater density than 1 or both positive controls at the 1:1,000 dilution, and present at the 1:3,000 dilution, were detected in 28% of clinically normal dogs, 40% of dogs with neoplasia, and 41% of dogs with SARDS. No bands in dogs with SARDS had a consistent location of immune activity, and none were detected at the 23-kd site. The area around the 48-kd site had increased immune activity in all 3 groups.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The etiology of SARDS in dogs does not appear to be similar to cancer-associated retinopathy in humans on the basis of absence of differential antibody activity against retinal proteins. Although dogs with SARDS often have clinical signs compatible with hyperadrenocorticism, neoplasia of the adrenal glands, pituitary gland, or lungs was not detected.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research