Felis ISSN 2398-2950

Spina bifida

Synonym(s): Spine bifida occulta

Contributor(s): Vetstream Ltd

Introduction

  • Developmental abnormality with failure of vertebral arch fusion.
  • Cause: unknown.
  • Signs: may be incidental, hindlimb neurological deficits.
  • Diagnosis: radiography.
  • Treatment: none.
  • Prognosis: good if no neurological deficits, guarded otherwise.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Developmental anomaly (genetic and environmental factors have been implicated).
  • Nutritional deficiencies can induce spina bifida experimentally.
  • Associated with exposure to numerous toxins in utero.
  • Midline cleft in vertebral arch as a result of:
    • Failure of dorsal spinous process to fuse.
    • Absence of vertebral arch (or entire vertebra).

Pathophysiology

  • Abnormal development of vertebrae   →   spinal cord damage   →   neurological signs.
  • Neural tube fails to close or cleft develops after closure   →   cleft in vertebral arch.
  • May be associated with abnormal spinal cord development.
    • Hydromyelia.
    • Syringomyelia.
    • Clefting of spinal cord.
  • May also be associated with meningocoele .

Timecourse

  • Present from birth and signs often noticed at a few weeks.

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.
  • Bailey C S, Morgan J P (1992) Congenital spinal malformations. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract 22 (4), 985-1015 PubMed.
  • Hall J A, Feltman M J, Ingram J T (1988) Sodium chloride depletion in a cat with fistulated meningomyelocele. JAVMA 192 (10), 1445-1448 PubMed.
  • Martin A H (1971) A congenital defect in the spinal cord of the Manx cat. Vet Pathol (3), 232-238 PubMed.
  • James C C, Lassman L P, Tomlinson B E (1969) Congenital anomalies of the lower spine and spinal cord in Manx cats. J Pathol 97 (2), 269-276 PubMed.


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