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  • Author or Editor: William Roy Fenner x
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Objective

To characterize clinical features, diagnostic evaluation, and treatment outcome for dogs with generalized tremors.

Design

Retrospective case series.

Animals

12 white purebred and 12 nonwhite mixed-breed and purebred dogs.

Procedure

Medical records of dogs examined for tremors between January 1984 and July 1995 were reviewed. History, signalment, abnormalities on physical and neurologic examinations, results of diagnostic testing, and diagnosis were recorded for each dog. Results were divided into the following 3 categories on the basis of the cause of the tremors: inflammatory, noninflammatory, and idiopathic. Cause was determined by results of CSF analyses or a history of toxin exposure.

Results

The only noninflammatory cause of generalized tremors identified in these dogs was mycotoxin ingestion. Steroid-responsive tremor syndrome had developed in 22 of 24 dogs, half of which had abnormal results of CSF analyses. Most dogs were young adults between 1 and 5 years old. More than half of the dogs were nonwhite mixed-breeds and all weighed < 15 kg (33 lb). Eighty percent of the dogs responded to immunosuppressive treatment within 3 days.

Clinical Implications

Inflammatory and noninflammatory causes for generalized tremors in dogs result in similar clinical signs, so a logical diagnostic and treatment approach is needed. Steroid-responsive tremor syndrome should be considered in small- to medium-breed, young adult dogs, regardless of coat color. A rapid and complete response to immunosuppressive treatment is expected. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1997;211:731–735)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association