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Link Between Lp And Back End Weakness


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Apologies if this is well-known, but I learned something today that I hadn't heard before so wanted to share.

 

I bought in my senior to Dr. Sisson at Angell Memorial in Boston and he diagnosed her with degenerative myelopathy (nerve degeneration).

 

She has two main symptoms - signs of LP and an increasingly weak back end. He explained that the larynx is controlled by the longest axon/nerve fiber in the body, oddly enough! Not what I expected for the larynx, but it takes a long route from the brain to the neck... And then the sciatica is the second longest. So when nerve degeneration hits, it logically hits the longest nerve fibers first...

 

I've heard of dogs commonly having both LP and problems with their hind end, but this was the first explanation I had seen for why we may see both larynx and leg problems in some older dogs.

 

I might have gotten some of the details wrong since it's always so hard to get everything in a vet appt, but thought I'd pass on if anyone else hadn't known this!

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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Guest greytbookert

This is pretty much how our vet explained it to us when Booker was having issues.

 

I'm sorry you are going through this too. We had a long road with the Boogie man. I hope all is well with you!

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Best wishes to your girl. Did the vet have any different suggestions for management?

 

He explained that the larynx is controlled by the longest axon/nerve fiber in the body,
Is this the vagus nerve (cranial nerve X)?

 

So when nerve degeneration hits, it logically hits the longest nerve fibers first...
I hope this doesn't sound smart-aleck, but how is this logical?

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Ellen, with brindle Milo and the blonde ballerina, Gelsey

remembering Eve, Baz, Scout, Romie, Nutmeg, and Jeter

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Best wishes to your girl. Did the vet have any different suggestions for management?

 

He explained that the larynx is controlled by the longest axon/nerve fiber in the body,
Is this the vagus nerve (cranial nerve X)?

 

So when nerve degeneration hits, it logically hits the longest nerve fibers first...
I hope this doesn't sound smart-aleck, but how is this logical?

 

The way he explained it is that the longer the signal has to travel, the more detrimental the degeneration is to it. It made sense when he explained it, so it may be lost in my translation.

 

No different suggestions for management - the good thing is we're in the early stages. She first started showing signs of LP about 8 months ago now and it hasn't progressed much in that time. The progression of the legs is new, but she's still running in the yard, so we're just to keep a close eye on her and make sure she doesn't get stressed/overheated, etc.

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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How is this diagnosis of degenerative myopathy made?

 

We (and two vets) believe Spencer has LS, and treatment with acupuncture/chiropractic seems to work. Didn't seem to need an MRI to prove it. He does also make hacking noises with his throat from time to time, though, which has me wondering.

 

Thanks so much for the info in this thread!

Edited by greyhead
Mary with Jumper Jack (2/17/11) and angels Shane (PA's Busta Rime, 12/10/02 - 10/14/16) and Spencer (Dutch Laser, 11/25/00 - 3/29/13).

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This is very interesting. It might explain some things that are happening with Betsy. Thank you.

Standard Poodle Daisy (12/13); Greys Hildy (Braska Hildy 7/10), Toodles (BL Toodles 7/09), Opal (Jax Opal 7/08)
Missing Cora (RL Nevada 5/99-10/09), Piper (Cee Bar Easy 2/99-1/10), Tally (Thunder La La 9/99-3/10), Edie (Daring Reva 9/99-10/12), Dixie (Kiowa Secret Sue 11/01-1/13), Jessie (P's Real Time 11/98-3/13), token boy Graham (Zydeco Dancer 9/00-5/13), Cal (Back Already 12/99-11/13), Betsy (Back Kick Beth 11/98-12/13), Standard Poodles Minnie (1/99-1/14) + Perry (9/98-2/14), Annie (Do Marcia 9/03-10/14), Pink (Miss Pinky Baker 1/02-6/15), Poppy (Cmon Err Not 8/05-1/16), Kat (Jax Candy 5/05-5/17), Ivy (Jax Isis 10/07-7/21)

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Sparks has mild of both but his LP is getting worse

He goes in for his annual in a few months so I'll get the vets thoughts on this

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Kari and the pups.
Run free sweet Hana 9/21/08-9/12/10. Missing Sparks with every breath.
Passion 10/16/02-5/25/17

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Guest Fasave

Dr. Sisson is a very good neurologist. He's has helped so many sight hounds here in the New England area. I took my boy to him for a second opinion after the initial neurologist wanted to do an expensive MRI to diagnose a back issue. Dr. Sisson spent 2 hours with my guy (on a one hour appointment). I think he gave up his lunch hour. Turns out he didn't have a back issue at all and required no further testing. Your pup is in good hands. Keep us updated on any other information you may learn.

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Guest KennelMom

That is really interesting...thanks for sharing (I love GT!)

 

Our LP boy definitely had some rear end weakness, but it was not lumbosacral stenosis. This would be an explanation...

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My Onyx had an LP tieback 3 yrs ago.

 

At 14 1/2 yrs old, she has minimal rear end weakness. Nothing that can't be attributed to simple old age. She still trots easily around the yard. Does stairs. She's just a little slow getting up.

So maybe I'm lucky and she's one of the ones that doesn't have both problems.

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How is this diagnosis of degenerative myopathy made?

 

We (and two vets) believe Spencer has LS, and treatment with acupuncture/chiropractic seems to work. Didn't seem to need an MRI to prove it. He does also make hacking noises with his throat from time to time, though, which has me wondering.

 

Thanks so much for the info in this thread!

 

The definitive way of diagnosis DM is an EMG under anesthesia to test the nerve function, but he said that it's too risky for a diagnosis.... anesthesia risks are increased in dogs that have DM (especially with LP), apparently.

 

So as far as what he did... he did a series of neurological function tests, tested her reflexes, and we had X-rays from our regular vet. He also looked at blood work and her urinalysis and did a full body exam.

 

If I remember right there were a few things that he saw that point to DM - muscle loss at a particular muscle in the leg (can't remember why), poor neurological reflexes, low pain response, slow reflexes (all in her back legs). When he did the LS test on her spine, she did not react poorly.

 

Then while we were there, she hacked for him a few times so he said right away that wasn't a cough from her lungs but her trying to clear her throat. So I guess that helped.

 

Dr. Sisson is a very good neurologist. He's has helped so many sight hounds here in the New England area. I took my boy to him for a second opinion after the initial neurologist wanted to do an expensive MRI to diagnose a back issue. Dr. Sisson spent 2 hours with my guy (on a one hour appointment). I think he gave up his lunch hour. Turns out he didn't have a back issue at all and required no further testing. Your pup is in good hands. Keep us updated on any other information you may learn.

 

This is the second time we've seen Dr. Sisson - and I agree, he's very thorough... we were also there for 2 hours! By the end, Princess got tired out and fall asleep on the bed we brought with us to the appt. I kinda wished I had one too. Between the drive up and the long appt, I was exhausted. :lol

With Buster Bloof (UCME Razorback 89B-51359) and Gingersnap Ginny (92D-59450). Missing Pepper, Berkeley, Ivy, Princess and Bauer at the bridge.

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