Comparison of cross sectional area and fat infiltration of the epaxial muscles in dogs with and without spinal cord compression

Res Vet Sci. 2014 Dec;97(3):646-51. doi: 10.1016/j.rvsc.2014.09.006. Epub 2014 Sep 16.


This study investigated the cross sectional area (CSA) and fat infiltration of the epaxial muscles in Dachshunds with compressive spinal cord lesions due to intervertebral disc herniation (IVDH) and in dogs with non-compressive spinal cord lesions with fibrocartilaginous embolism (FCE). The CSA and fat infiltration of the multifidi and longissimus dorsi muscles were determined from T1 weighted magnetic resonance images. Difference in CSA and fat infiltration between the lesion- and non-lesion side in the Dachshunds was assessed using mixed model analysis. Difference in CSA and fat infiltration between Dachshunds and FCE dogs was analysed with independent sample t-tests. There was no difference in CSA or fat infiltration between sides in the Dachshunds. FCE dogs had greater CSA (multifidus P = 0.036, longissimus P < 0.001) and less fat infiltration compared to Dachshunds (longissimus P = 0.017). Duration of neurological deficits, age, body size and conformation are likely to have influenced the difference between the groups.

Keywords: CSA; Dachshund; Epaxial muscle; Intervertebral disc herniation; MRI; Multifidus.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue / metabolism*
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Cartilage Diseases / physiopathology
  • Cartilage Diseases / veterinary*
  • Dog Diseases / physiopathology*
  • Dogs
  • Embolism / physiopathology
  • Embolism / veterinary*
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / complications
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / physiopathology
  • Intervertebral Disc Displacement / veterinary*
  • Lumbar Vertebrae / physiopathology*
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging / veterinary
  • Muscle, Skeletal / metabolism
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology*
  • Spinal Cord Compression / etiology
  • Spinal Cord Compression / physiopathology
  • Spinal Cord Compression / veterinary*

Supplementary concepts

  • Fibrocartilaginous embolism