Jump to Main Content
Presence of thoracic and lumbar vertebral malformations in pugs with and without chronic neurological deficits
- Rohdin, C., Häggström, J., Ljungvall, I., Nyman Lee, H., De Decker, S., Bertram, S., Lindblad-Toh, K., Hultin Jäderlund, K.
- The veterinary journal 2018 v.241 pp. 24-30
- abnormal development, computed tomography, dogs, magnetic resonance imaging, spinal cord, spine (bones), Norway, Sweden, United Kingdom
- Congenital vertebral malformations (CVMs) are common in brachycephalic dogs such as the pug, and are often considered incidental findings. However, specific CVMs have been suggested to be associated with neurological deficits in pugs. The objective of this study was to investigate the clinical importance of CVMs in the pug by comparing computed tomography studies of the thoracolumbar spine from pugs without neurological deficits with those from pugs with a confirmed T3-L3 spinal cord lesion and neurological deficits consistent with a chronic T3-L3 myelopathy.A total of 57 pugs were recruited into the study from Sweden (n=33), United Kingdom (n=21) and Norway (n=3); 30 with neurological deficits and 27 without. Focal T3-L3 pathology was confirmed in all pugs with neurological deficits by magnetic resonance imaging (n=29) and/or pathology (n=15). Computed tomography studies of the thoracolumbar spine from pugs with and without neurological deficits were compared to investigate possible associations between presentation of neurological deficits consistent with chronic T3-L3 pathology and signalment variables, presence of CVMs and type of CVMs. Congenital vertebral malformations were as common in pugs with, as in pugs without, neurological deficits. Regardless of neurological status, the majority of pugs (96%) presented with one or more CVM. An association between presence, or type of CVM in the T1-L3 vertebral column, and neurological deficits consistent with T3-L3 pathology could not be confirmed.