Dog Health Questions? Ask a Dog Vet for Answers ASAP
Hello I am Dr. Joey. Thanks for trusting me to help you and your pet today. I am a licensed veterinarian with over 15 years of experience. I look forward to working with you.
Morning Dr. Joey,
What a tough situation. If this is truly spina bifida as conformed by the MRI, then a laminectomy or excision of anything, per se will not cure this, if this is spina bifida. Treatment is largely based on closing the meninges as done by a board certified surgeon or neurologist, and in some cases, releasing the filum terminale to prevent tethering of the spinal cord. But resolution of deficits is not likeley. Closure can be helpful in reducing the risk of a septic meningitis.
Thank for your time on this inquiry!
I do not think we could expect any surgery to resolve all or any of the deficits. :(
Did the neurologist say this was the route to take? If so, then perhaps this is not spina bifida or it is in a location that they need to do a laminectomy to get to the defect to facilitate closure.
Regardless, it is a lot to put a young puppy through when the prognosis for return to function of her issues are low.
after attempting to reach out to the foster mother of the dog, she has refused to release the dog back to rescue. The foster mom says that she was told that the surgery would give the puppy back full bladder and bowel control?
I am not sure that any surgeon can make that sort of guarantee.
No, the neurologist did not say this was going to cure the puppy and did say he did not recommend the surgery. The foster mother seems to misunderstand the diagnosis.
If her problem was a compressed disk and not spina bifida, then the laminectomy might carry a better prognosis to return her to function. I hate to mention this but perhaps the foster parent is confusing a slipped disk with spina bifida. They are very different issues.
Xrays showed possible Spina Bifida and the MRI confirmed SPina Bifida and tethered nerves.
I work with many rescues and I am not sure I would highly recommend proceeding with this risky surgery (and spending rescue organization funds) unless there is a private donor willing to support the entire bill and the extensive rehab needed. I am also not sure any surgeon would attempt this given that there are tethered nerves. This makes doing the surgery even riskier for causing more neurological compromise than less.
That is our fear. We have found an adoptive family with two other SB English Bulldogs who wants to allow her to live, as is, with SB.
The now refuses to allow the puppy to return to the rescue to be adopted out and insists that the surgery is a cure.
There is a fundraiser posted with the information that a dorsal laminectomy will provide full functional control.
I think as is would be my best recommendation. If they are willing to tolerate her issues right now, then that is wonderful. We may not have her for long, but pehaps she can be well loved during that time.
That is our hope. I wanted to receive another opinion on this matter as we fear the foster is leading the puppy in the wrong direction of the surgery. The rescue has started a civil proceeding in order to receive the puppy and tranpsort her to her forever home, as an SB dog.
Is there any documentation that I may be able to use as support on the affect of dorsal laminectomy on a dog? Or even more, a dorsal laminectomy ever done on a dog with SB?
I think what the foster must be referring to (after doing a literature search) is that to get to the lesion a dorsal laminectomy must be done. So, it is a part of the procedure. That part is probably true. But what is not true is that there is any guarantee on the recovery. It is possible that she may do fine and be better at the other end, but there is also a huge risk that she may be worse or no better. Tough call. I can find no documentation that a laminectomy will or will not help this problem since if it is done, it is but a part of the larger procedure to fix the actual lesion.
Thank you Dr Joey. You also confirmed what the dignosing neurologist has stated, that there is no documentation to support such a surgery on an SB dog.
Thank you for your time and detailed explanation.
You are certainly welcome.
Please keep me posted. I am always happy to answer followup questions. You can reply to this question at any time to submit a followup. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. If there’s anything else I can do, let me know – it’s been a pleasure working with you and I hope to assist you again soon! Kindly submit a rating as you exit our chat.
I sure will. Thank you, again.