Jump to content

Medical Translation, Please?


Recommended Posts

I've been meaning to ask this question, but I keep forgetting. Two months ago Robin got very sick and was at the emergency specialty center. As part of our diagnostics at the time, we did xrays of the entire lateral spine. Robin has had hind end weakness that has gotten worse in recent months. In a lot of ways, from what I have read on GT, he has exhibited as a classic LS greyhound, but my vet wasn't quite sure since his reactions didn't seem solely in the LS region. I had been meaning to get x-rays done, and now I have them. But I never got a clear explanation of what they found, though I get the basic idea. And I keep forgetting to ask my vet to translate that part of the report for me. Here is what the report says:

 

"There was narrowing of the intervertebral spaces around T12-L2 and stair-stepping at the lumbosacral junction with bridging spondylosis. These findings.....may indicate compression of the spinal cord in this area and may be the cause for chronic hindlimb weakness."

 

Can someone translate this for me? Is it medical-speak for lumbosacral stenosis? Or something else? Or more general?

 

It is hard to research and get ideas on how to help him feel his best when I don't know what he has. Can anyone help?

 

:)

Cathy & Calvin (DOB 9/18/13). Always missing my angel Robin (Abdo Bullard).
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can not see LS on x-rays. Sounds like your hound has aging changes. He's a recent pic of my Shannon's spine -cervical/thoracic area. Look closely-she as a decent amount of bridging spondylosis. It looks like the vertebrae are connected. It's very common and usually not problematic.

null-720.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

may indicate compression of the spinal cord in this area and may be the cause for chronic hindlimb weakness."

 

... Is it medical-speak for lumbosacral stenosis?

 

It's med-speak for the possibility ("may be") of LS. You can't tell for sure on an x-ray because you can't see all the soft structures.

Star aka Starz Ovation (Ronco x Oneco Maggie*, litter #48538), Coco aka Low Key (Kiowa Mon Manny x Party Hardy, litter # 59881), and mom in Illinois
We miss Reko Batman (Trouper Zeke x Marque Louisiana), 11/15/95-6/29/06, Rocco the thistledown whippet, 04/29/93-10/14/08, Reko Zema (Mo Kick x Reko Princess), 8/16/98-4/18/10, the most beautiful girl in the whole USA, my good egg Joseph aka Won by a Nose (Oneco Cufflink x Buy Back), 09/22/2003-03/01/2013, and our gentle sweet Gidget (Digitizer, Dodgem by Design x Sobe Mulberry), 1/29/2006-11/22/2014, gone much too soon. Never forgetting CJC's Buckshot, 1/2/07-10/25/10.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm with Batmom.

 

George has only had x-rays. I am not spending $2,600 on an MRI to confirm the diagnosis of LS since there is nothing on this earth which would compel me to subject a dog to spinal surgery, which is the only cure for LS anyway. So why spend that kind of money on a TEST?


Hamish-siggy1.jpg

Susan,  Hamish,  Mister Bigglesworth and Nikita Stanislav. Missing Ming, George, and Buck

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sounds a lot like what my first grey, Sugar had. She did not react to the LS test, so vet said she technically did not have LS, but she did have lower back/spine weakness. I remember the term "spondylosis" was used. Acupuncture was a great help to her.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 

It's med-speak for the possibility ("may be") of LS. You can't tell for sure on an x-ray because you can't see all the soft structures.

:nod Which means she probably has LS.

 

Your best bet imo is to focus on core strengthening (you can see a veterinary physical therapist to get started on exercises, but hilly walks will also work) to support the hind end. You can also consider medications to help alleviate symptoms. Gabapentin can be useful, but also consider Robaxin, which is a muscle relaxer if she's got spasms in other areas from compensating for the hind end weakness. Zuri gets them in his groin area and along his spine about 1/3 to 1/2 of the way down. I can just run my fingers down that musculature along either side of the spine with gentle pressure and get a reaction (he twitches in the spots where his muscles are tight). I'm also a big fan of fish oil for pretty much anything and everything - keeps things lubricated and moving, helps relieve inflammation, etc.

gallery_12662_3351_862.jpg

Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

:nod Which means she probably has LS.

 

Your best bet imo is to focus on core strengthening (you can see a veterinary physical therapist to get started on exercises, but hilly walks will also work) to support the hind end. You can also consider medications to help alleviate symptoms. Gabapentin can be useful, but also consider Robaxin, which is a muscle relaxer if she's got spasms in other areas from compensating for the hind end weakness. Zuri gets them in his groin area and along his spine about 1/3 to 1/2 of the way down. I can just run my fingers down that musculature along either side of the spine with gentle pressure and get a reaction (he twitches in the spots where his muscles are tight). I'm also a big fan of fish oil for pretty much anything and everything - keeps things lubricated and moving, helps relieve inflammation, etc.

 

He is on gabapentin since his hospital stay, and meloxicam. I had heard recent mention of Robaxin, so I was starting to wonder about it. I think he's doing okay, but I keep wondering if there is more I can do to make him more comfortable...

 

Those twitches you describe? Robin gets that all along his spine, not just in one or two spots. (though the gabapentin seems to make him twitch less)

Cathy & Calvin (DOB 9/18/13). Always missing my angel Robin (Abdo Bullard).
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I know each dog is different, but I would choose the Robaxin over the NSAID (Meloxicam in your case) any day. I've had to put Zuri on Deramaxx for a dislocated toe and really didn't notice a difference in his symptoms, but I do notice when he's not on the Robaxin. There's also a lower risk of side effects with Robaxin. I tend to try to reserve the NSAIDs for when we absolutely need them. Having said that, if it helps, but all means keep using it. Tramadol is also a viable option I believe.

gallery_12662_3351_862.jpg

Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for the advice. I will contact my vet and ask him about Robaxin. If possible, I would like to get him off the meloxicam and see if it makes a difference. I do worry...

 

Whenever I've tried tramadol on Robin for booboos in the past, it doesn't seem to do much but make him pant more...but it is good to know there are more options to consider!

Cathy & Calvin (DOB 9/18/13). Always missing my angel Robin (Abdo Bullard).
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Scouts_mom

Do consider acupuncture. I used it on my Tia who had hind-end weakness and a vet who wanted to do surgery. The acupuncture gave my sweet old girl a couple more years, saved me a lot of money, and saved Tia a lot of stress.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Robaxin has worked wonders for Aston, who was diagnosed with LS in April. It seems to have a very high upper-limit dose (i.e., it's pretty safe). He is also on gabapentin and tramadol, but I'm not sure whether those are really helping. He's also not suffering any visible negative side-effects, so I am leaving him on them for the moment and checking into other therapies. I also have him on a very high-potency fish oil, and Cosamin 2x daily.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Okay, so I asked my vet about Robaxin, and he said it is worth a try. So I picked it up today at Walgreens. When I did, the pharmacist asked if he is a big dog, because he dosage size is that of an adult human. :-) While I think that is probably right, I figured I'd go on here and check. The vet prescribed 1 750 mg tablet every 8-12 hours. Does that seem right?

 

And the tablets are huge! Geez...

The pharmacist also said that Robaxin has a sedating effect in humans. Is that the case with the hounds? (I remember they said the same thing about gabapentin, but Robin hasn't had any issues with it...)

 

Robin has been off the meloxicam for a few days, as he was having some stomach issues and I didn't want to make it worse. The meloxicam is for the arthritis....I'm going to try him off of it for a few more days to see if I notice a difference stomach-wise and pain-wise.

 

Sigh...there are so many factors to all of this....I guess I'm just learning as I go along....

Cathy & Calvin (DOB 9/18/13). Always missing my angel Robin (Abdo Bullard).
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have two LS dogs. The only test is the going down the spine with your fingers. (that I know of) both are on Gabopentin. The first vet I saw was our groups vet for one of the girls. I have never been so frustrated in my life. She goes she has the symptoms of LS but I am not sure. Here is a newer drug being used for nerve pain (Gabie) and I don't know if it has any side effects or not but it won't hurt to try. I came home call my personal vet (the dog was a foster at the time) and got her in the next day. My vet confirmed LS and told me about Gabie. There are no side effects. It only works on areas needed and is for nerve pain. Even humans can take it but I haven't gotten that brave yet. So then I end up with another foster (13 year old) and I do the test myself and sure enough she shows signs. Take her to my vet, she confirms. So my Sweetie that I adopted and my perma foster are both on Gabie. They have good days and bad. My vet told me to add a tramadol with the gabie if needed.

Sheila
Loved by

Mozart, Sherri, Xavier, McCleary, Tigger. Amelia and 2 Salukis Poppy and Zarah

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Add Nutmeg to the "Probably LS" list. What dosages of omega 3 fish oil are people giving their dogs? Nutmeg (70 lbs) has been taking 1000 mg for a while, and the vet says that's the standard dosage.

 

How is Robin feeling these days?

siggy_z1ybzn.jpg

Ellen, with brindle Milo and the blonde ballerina, Gelsey

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

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My Carrie is another that I think is stepping into the "probably LS" camp too...she does well on Robaxin AMD tramadol and gets acupuncture.

 

With her it's difficult to tell if her slight issues are a result of the stroke she had before I got her or if we're now looking at it being LS.

Kristin in Moline, IL USA with Ozzie (MRL Crusin Clem), Clarice (Clarice McBones), Latte and Sage the IGs, and the kitties: Violet and Rose
Lovingly Remembered: Sutra (Fliowa Sutra) 12/02/97-10/12/10, Pinky (Pick Me) 04/20/03-11/19/12, Fritz (Fritz Fire) 02/05/01 - 05/20/13, Ace (Fantastic Ace) 02/05/01 - 07/05/13, and Carrie (Takin the Crumbs) 05/08/99 - 09/04/13.

A cure for cancer can't come soon enough.--

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Zuri's Robaxin pills are 500 mg and he's prescribed them 3x/day, but right now I only give them twice a day. So there is a lower dose option if you want it. Also, prices vary a lot. The best price I've found so far is at Costco. I'm paying around $28 for 84 pills I think. They can have a sedating effect although I can't say I've noticed it with Zuri. I had to take them recently and actually realized they were having the opposite effect and keeping me awake, which is also possible if less likely.

 

I missed the arthritis part. You may need to continue the nsaid for that reason.

gallery_12662_3351_862.jpg

Jen, CPDT-KA with Zuri, lab in a greyhound suit, Violet, formerly known as Faith, Skye, the permanent puppy, Cisco, resident cat, and my baby girl Neyla, forever in my heart

"The great thing about science is that you're free to disagree with it, but you'll be wrong."

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...