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Can Vet J. 2015 Mar;56(3):288-91.

Foramen magnum decompression surgery in 23 Chiari-like malformation patients 2007-2010: outcomes and owner survey results.

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The Veterinary Specialty Center and Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, Mississippi 39762, USA.


in English, French

Chiari-like malformation (CLM) with syringomyelia (SM) in dogs is particularly prominent in the Cavalier King Charles spaniel breed, but has also been reported in several other small breed dogs. Over a period of 3 years, 23 canine patients were treated surgically for CLM-SM. Surgery consisted of foramen magnum decompression, durotomy, duraplasty, and free autogenous adipose tissue grafting (fat graft). All patients were re-evaluated clinically at least 1 month after surgery and some up to 3 years after surgery. Improvement was noted on all clinical evaluations. A questionnaire was mailed to all 23 owners after a period of at least 1 year after surgery. Seventeen surveys were returned. No patient has required additional surgery to date, 94% (16/17) had some improvement in quality of life after surgery, and none were judged to deteriorate to less than the pre-surgical status. The authors conclude that this surgical procedure, combined with medical therapy, resulted in favorable long-term outcomes.

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