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Thoracolumbar myelopathy with diffuse vertebral involvement in a dog secondary to aleukaemic lymphocytic leukaemia
  1. Caitlin Elizabeth Doran1,
  2. Simon Platt2,
  3. Vivian Lau3 and
  4. Melinda Camus4
  1. 1Neurology, Gulf Coast Veterinary Specialists, Houston, Texas, UK
  2. 2Small Animal Medicine and Surgery, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA
  3. 3Neurology, Sage Centers for Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Care, Redwood City, California, USA
  4. 4Veterinary Pathology, University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Caitlin Elizabeth Doran; caitlin.e.doran{at}


Incidence rate of lymphocytic leukaemia is unknown in canine patients; neurological manifestations and imaging findings are rarely reported. In human medicine, acute lymphocytic leukaemia is known to have a high rate of meningeal metastasis prompting the use of intrathecal chemotherapy for newly diagnosed cases regardless of neurological signs. This report documents the clinical presentation and diagnostic findings in a dog presenting with paraparesis and pain, ultimately diagnosed with aleukaemic lymphocytic leukaemia. MRI findings with diffuse vertebral involvement secondary to lymphocytic leukaemia have not been documented in the veterinary literature. This report adds to the clinical presentations of leukaemia in canines and highlights a neurological sequela of the disease. Further investigation into neurological involvement of leukaemia is needed in veterinary medicine and necropsy, with meningeal histopathology, is recommended for all cases of acute lymphocytic leukaemia in canines to assess the metastatic rate and direct further research.

  • leukaemia
  • lymphocytic leukaemia
  • aleukaemic leukaemia
  • vertebral leukaemia
  • magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
  • neuroimaging
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  • Contributors All authors have contributed to, and read and edited this manuscript prior to submission.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

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

  • Data availability statement Additional data may be available upon request.

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