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Ischaemic paraspinal myopathy along with myelopathy due to putative fibrocartilaginous embolism in a dog
  1. Julia Sehl1,
  2. Achim D Gruber2,
  3. Kali Lazzerini3 and
  4. Shenja Loderstedt4
  1. 1 Department of Veterinary Medicine at the Freie Universität Berlin, Berlin, Germany
  2. 2 Department of Veterinary Medicine at the Freie Universität Berlin, Institute of Veterinary Pathology, Berlin, Germany
  3. 3 Small Animal Hospital, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
  4. 4 Department of Veterinary Medicine at the Freie Universität Berlin, Small Animal Clinic, Berlin, Germany
  1. Correspondence to Miss Julia Sehl; juliasehl{at}


A 10-year-old German shepherd dog was presented with peracute onset of non-ambulatory paraparesis. Clinical signs and neurological examination revealed lack of proprioception and reduced to absent reflexes in both hind limbs, indicating a lesion to spinal cord segments (SCS) L4–S3. In contrast, MRI identified intramedullary signal changes within the SCS T13–L2 and a sharply demarcated zone of signal changes in the adjacent dorsal lumbar musculature on the left side. The findings were consistent with ischaemic myelopathy, most likely due to fibrocartilaginous embolism (FCE). The lesion also included large areas of presumably ischaemic myopathy which was confirmed by histopathology of biopsies from adjacent muscles. On re-examination, three months after presentation, ambulatory paraparesis remained, proprioceptive deficits improved and spinal reflexes were normal. However, the affected left longissimus lumborum muscle had become markedly atrophic. FCE as the most common cause for ischaemic myelopathy obviously may also induce ischaemic paraspinal myopathy.

  • Neurology
  • MRI
  • Spine
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  • Contributors All authors have made a relevant contribution to the manuscript. The manuscript was drafted by JS and all coauthors have assessed and corrected the manuscript.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement All available data can be obtained by contacting the corresponding author.

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