Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Central nervous system: multiple injury

Synonym(s): CNS multifocal injury

Contributor(s): Kyle Braund

Introduction

  • Not uncommon.
  • Cause: usually severe trauma, eg road traffic accidents, gunshot or shrapnel, falls or fights.
  • Signs: if brain injury - obscure signs of other injuries; if no brain injury - likely to indicate a diffuse or multifocal lesion, with a mixture of upper and lower motor neuron signs.
  • Diagnosis: signs, MRI.
  • Treatment: corticosteroids and nursing.
  • Prognosis: guarded.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Road traffic accidents.
  • Gunshot/shrapnel wounds.
  • Fighting.
  • Falling.

Predisposing factors

General
  • Animals allowed to wander unsupervised.
  • Working dogs, eg gundogs, dogs used to sniff for explosives, dogs used in rescue work.
  • Dogs with aggressive temperaments and small stature - more prone to fight injuries.
  • Unsterilized animals: more likely to escape owner control, to wander unsupervised, males more aggressive.

Pathophysiology

  • Direct mechanical interruption of neuronal pathways → loss of function of affected nerve.
  • Grey matter (more vulnerable than white matter) → metabolic needs exceed available blood flow → progressive ischemic damage → delayed tissue injury (hours to days).
  • See also spinal cord concussion Spinal cord: concussion , CNS: head injury Brain: trauma , and nerve trauma neuropathy Nerve trauma neuropathy.

Timecourse

  • Neurological deficits immediately follow injury and may then be progressive.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Dewey C W et al (1992) Principles of head trauma management in dogs and cats - Part 1. Comp Contin Educ Pract Vet 14 (2), 199-206 VetMedResource.
  • March P A (1992) Neural regulation of respiration. Physiology and pathophysiology. Probl Vet Med 4 (2), 387-404 PubMed.
  • Colter S et al (1988) Acute injury to the central nervous system. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract 18 (3), 545-63 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Shores A (1989)Craniocerebral trauma.In:Current Veterinary Therapy X.Ed R W Kirk. Philadelphia: W B Saunders. pp 847-853.


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