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- Author or Editor: Ronaldo C. da Costa x
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Objective—To characterize and compare the MRI morphological features of the cervical vertebral column of Great Danes with and without clinical signs of cervical spondylomyelopathy (CSM).
Design—Prospective cohort study.
Animals—30 Great Danes (15 clinically normal and 15 CSM-affected).
Procedures—All dogs underwent MRI of the cervical vertebral column (C2–3 through T1–2). Features evaluated included sites of subarachnoid space compression, spinal cord compression, or both; degree, cause, and direction of compression; MRI signal changes of the spinal cord; articular process (facet) joint characteristics; internal vertebral venous plexus visibility; and presence of extradural synovial cysts as well as presence and degree of intervertebral disk degeneration and foraminal stenosis.
Results—Clinically normal and CSM-affected dogs had 11 and 61 compressive sites, respectively, detected with MRI. All CSM-affected dogs had ≥ 1 site of spinal cord compression. No signal changes were observed in spinal cords of normal dogs, whereas 14 sites of hyperintensity were found in 9 CSM-affected dogs. Foraminal stenosis was present in 11 clinically normal and all CSM-affected dogs. The number of stenotic foraminal sites was significantly greater in the CSM-affected group, and severe stenosis appeared to be more common in this group than in the clinically normal group. Significant differences were identified between clinically normal and CSM-affected dogs with regard to amount of synovial fluid evident, regularity of articular surfaces, degree of articular process joint proliferation, and internal vertebral venous plexus visibility.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Abnormalities were detected with MRI in several clinically normal Great Danes. Severe spinal cord compression, number of stenotic foraminal sites, and signal changes within the spinal cord distinguished CSM-affected from clinically normal Great Danes.
Objective—To evaluate progression of clinical signs and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings in dogs with cervical spondylomyelopathy (wobbler syndrome) treated medically or surgically.
Design—Prospective cohort study.
Animals—12 Doberman Pinschers.
Procedures—Neurologic examinations and MRI were performed before medical (n = 9) or surgical treatment (ventral slot, 3) and a minimum of 12 months later.
Results—Mean follow-up time was 14.5 months. Clinically, 2 dogs improved after surgical treatment and 5 improved after medical treatment. Magnetic resonance imaging of surgically treated dogs revealed adequate spinal cord decompression. Spinal cord signal changes were seen in 2 dogs before surgery, both of which had new signal changes at the same and adjacent sites during follow-up examination. One dog treated surgically developed 3 new areas of spinal cord compression. In the medically treated dogs, the severity of spinal cord compression at the time of follow-up examination was unchanged in 4 dogs, worse in 2 dogs, and improved in 3 dogs, but spinal cord atrophy was observed on transverse images. Four medically treated dogs had changes in spinal cord signal initially, but none developed new signal changes or compressions.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Medical and surgical treatment improved or stabilized the clinical condition of most dogs. Surgical treatment appeared to hasten the development of additional areas of spinal cord compression and lesions in dogs with preoperative cord changes; however, the clinical importance of these changes was not determined. The progression of pathologic MRI abnormalities was notably less in medically treated dogs, compared with surgically treated dogs.
OBJECTIVE To compare the percentage of the C3-C7 vertebral canal occupied by the spinal cord in small-breed dogs with that in Doberman Pinschers and Great Danes with and without cervical spondylomyelopathy (CSM).
ANIMALS 30 small-breed dogs (body weight, < 15 kg), 15 clinically normal Doberman Pinschers, 15 Doberman Pinschers with CSM, 15 clinically normal Great Danes, and 15 Great Danes with CSM.
PROCEDURES In a retrospective study, sagittal and transverse T2-weighted MRI images of the cervical (C3 to C7) vertebral column obtained from dogs that met study criteria and were free of extensive abnormalities that could affect the spinal cord diameter between January 2005 and February 2015 were reviewed. The area and height of the vertebral column and spinal cord were measured at the cranial and caudal aspect of each vertebra from C3 to C7, and the percentage of the vertebral canal occupied by the spinal cord at each location was calculated and compared among groups of dogs.
RESULTS Mean percentage of the vertebral canal occupied by the spinal cord was greatest for small-breed dogs and lowest for Great Danes, but did not differ between Doberman Pinschers and small-breed dogs at approximately half of the locations evaluated or between Doberman Pinschers with and without CSM or between Great Danes with and without CSM.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results suggested that the percentage of the vertebral canal occupied by the spinal cord, although expected to increase with vertebral canal stenosis, may not have a primary role in the pathogenesis of CSM.
To describe the neurologic signs and MRI findings for German Shepherd Dogs (GSDs) with cervical spondylomyelopathy (CSM).
10 GSDs with confirmed CSM.
Medical records from January 2006 through July 2018 were reviewed to identify dogs with CSM. For each CSM-affected dog, information regarding age, duration of clinical signs, presence of neurologic signs, and treatments administered were obtained; the main site and cause of spinal cord compression and other vertebral and spinal cord changes were identified on MRI images.
Data for 9 male and 1 female (mean age, 6.2 years) GSDs with CSM were assessed. Dogs were classified as having chronic (n = 9) or acute (1) CSM. Nine dogs had ataxia; 1 dog had only signs of cervical hyperesthesia. Neurologic examination findings localized the lesion to the cervical portion of the vertebral column in each dog. The main spinal cord compression site was at the C6-7 (n = 5), C5-6 (4), or C4-5 (1) intervertebral spaces; osseous proliferation of the articular processes was the sole or a contributory cause of these compressions for 6 of the 10 dogs. Eight dogs also had dorsal compression of the spinal cord as the result of ligamenta flava hypertrophy.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
The 10 GSDs of the present retrospective case series had CSM that was often characterized by osseous changes and a ligamentous component and were older than dogs of other breeds (eg, Great Dane and Mastiff) with osseous-associated CSM described in previous reports. Cervical spondylomyelopathy should be a differential diagnosis for GSDs with ataxia, paresis, or signs of cervical hyperesthesia.
Objective—To establish the incidence of and risk factors for seizures following myelography performed with iohexol in dogs.
Design—Retrospective case series.
Procedures—Medical records were searched for dogs that underwent myelography between April 2002 and December 2004. Data extracted included body weight, breed, age, sex, volume and dose of iohexol, site of injections, location of lesion, duration of anesthesia, surgical procedures immediately after myelography, use of acepromazine, and presence or absence of seizures.
Results—15 (3%) dogs had postmyelographic seizures. Risk factors significantly associated with seizures were size of dogs (large dogs were 35.35 times as likely to have seizures as were small dogs), location of contrast medium injection (dogs in which iohexol was injected into the cerebellomedullary cistern were 7.4 times as likely to have seizures as were dogs in which iohexol was injected into the lumbar cistern), location of lesion (dogs with lesions at the level of the cervical portion of the vertebral column were 4.65 times as likely to develop seizures as were dogs with lesions in other regions), and total volume of iohexol. Mean ± SD total volume of iohexol was 11.73 ± 5.52 mL (median, 10.5 mL [range, 3.0 to 21.0 mL]) for dogs that had seizures and 4.57 ± 4.13 mL (median, 3.5 mL [range, 0.75 to 45.0 mL]) for those that did not.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Large-breed dogs with cervical lesions and large volumes of iohexol injected into the cerebellomedullary cistern had the highest risk of seizures. The use of contrast medium volumes > 8 mL in large dogs should be avoided, with preference given to injections into the lumbar cistern.
Objective—To evaluate the ability of 2-D time-of-flight (ToF) magnetic resonance angiography (MRA) to depict intracranial vasculature and compare results obtained with 3.0- and 7.0-T scanners in dogs.
Animals—5 healthy Beagles.
Procedures—2-D ToF-MRA of the intracranial vasculature was obtained for each dog by use of a 3.0-T and a 7.0-T scanner. Quantitative assessment of the images was obtained by documentation of the visibility of major arteries comprising the cerebral arterial circle and their branches and recording the number of vessels visualized in the dorsal third of the brain. Qualitative assessment was established by evaluation of overall image quality and image artifacts.
Results—Use of 3.0- and 7.0-T scanners allowed visualization of the larger vessels of the cerebral arterial circle. Use of a 7.0-T scanner was superior to use of a 3.0-T scanner in depiction of the first- and second-order arterial branches. Maximum-intensity projection images had a larger number of vessels when obtained by use of a 7.0-T scanner than with a 3.0-T scanner. Overall, image quality and artifacts were similar with both scanners.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Visualization of the major intracranial arteries was comparable with 3.0- and 7.0-T scanners; the 7.0-T scanner was superior for visualizing smaller vessels. Results indicated that ToF-MRA is an easily performed imaging technique that can be included as part of a standard magnetic resonance imaging examination and should be included in the imaging protocol of dogs suspected of having cerebrovascular disease.
OBJECTIVE To characterize and compare gait variables in Doberman Pinschers with and without cervical spondylomyelopathy (CSM).
ANIMALS 18 Doberman Pinschers (9 clinically normal dogs and 9 CSM-affected dogs).
PROCEDURES A neurologic examination was performed on all dogs. The diagnosis of CSM was confirmed with MRI. Temporospatial and kinetic gait variables were measured by use of a pressure-sensitive walkway. Temporospatial variables evaluated included stance phase duration, swing phase duration, gait cycle duration, stride length, and gait velocity. Kinetic variables evaluated included peak vertical force and vertical impulse. Random-effects linear regression was used to determine the difference between CSM-affected and clinically normal dogs for each of the 7 variables.
RESULTS Values for temporospatial variables were significantly smaller in the thoracic limbs of CSM-affected dogs, compared with values for the thoracic limbs of clinically normal dogs. For the kinetic variables, peak vertical force was significantly higher in the thoracic limbs than the pelvic limbs for all dogs. Vertical impulse values were higher in the thoracic limbs than the pelvic limbs. There were significant differences in mean vertical impulse between the thoracic and pelvic limbs for both groups.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE In this study, significant differences in temporospatial variables were identified between the thoracic limbs of clinically normal and CSM-affected dogs, with the values being smaller for the CSM-affected dogs than for the clinically normal dogs. A pressure-sensitive walkway may provide a valid, practical option for rapid, objective assessment of gait and response to treatment in dogs with CSM.
Objective—To compare outcomes and survival times for dogs with cervical spondylomyelopathy (CSM; wobbler syndrome) treated medically or surgically.
Design—Retrospective case series.
Procedures—Medical records of dogs were included if the diagnosis of CSM had been made on the basis of results of diagnostic imaging and follow-up information (minimum, 6 months) was available. Ordinal logistic regression was used to compare outcomes and the product-limit method was used to compare survival times between dogs treated surgically and dogs treated medically.
Results—37 dogs were treated surgically, and 67 were treated medically. Owners reported that 30 (81%) dogs treated surgically were improved, 1 (3%) was unchanged, and 6 (16%) were worse and that 36 (54%) dogs treated medically were improved, 18 (27%) were unchanged, and 13 (19%) were worse. Outcome was not significantly different between groups. Information on survival time was available for 33 dogs treated surgically and 43 dogs treated medically. Forty of the 76 (53%) dogs were euthanized because of CSM. Median and mean survival times were 36 and 48 months, respectively, for dogs treated medically and 36 and 46.5 months, respectively, for dogs treated surgically. Survival times did not differ significantly between groups.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—In the present study, neither outcome nor survival time was significantly different between dogs with CSM treated medically and dogs treated surgically, suggesting that medical treatment is a viable and valuable option for management of dogs with CSM.