Outcome of intervertebral disk disease surgery depending on dog breed, location and experience of the surgeon: 1113 cases

Klesty, Alexandra; Forterre, Franck; Bolln, Gudrun (2019). Outcome of intervertebral disk disease surgery depending on dog breed, location and experience of the surgeon: 1113 cases. Tierärztliche Praxis. Ausgabe K - Kleintiere, Heimtiere, 47(4), pp. 233-241. Thieme 10.1055/a-0948-9187

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Objective: Intervertebral disc disease (IVDD) is a common neurological condition in dogs that can be treated surgically in many cases. Following surgical disc treatment, possible influencing factors, including signalment, localisation and severity of the IVDD and the surgeon’s experience, were investigated to determine their impact on the long-term outcome of the treatment.
Material and methods: Data from 1113 dogs that had undergone surgical treatment for one or more herniated discs between January 2008 and July 2013 were evaluated.
Results: In particular, there was a disposition for the chondrodystrophic (CD) breeds Dachshund, Jack Russell Terrier and French Bulldog to suffer from herniated discs much earlier than non-chondrodystrophic (NCD) breeds, with significant differences in localisation and neurological severity. Unneutered male dogs were disproportionately more frequently affected, whereas the patient weight did not correlate with IVDD occurrence. The postoperative outcome was affected by the neurological severity and localisation of the IVDD, but not by the breed of dog or the surgeon’s level of experience. Similarly, there was no correlation between the surgical procedure used and convalescence or recurrence rate.

Conclusion and clinical relevance: CD breeds were more prone to IVDH and on average earlier than NCD breeds, with French Bulldogs as the youngest patients. Most incidents occurred in the thoracic spine (peak in Th12/13), with the fewest in the cervical spine, with race-specific differences: Beagles were mainly affected in the cervical spine, small NCD breeds, Dachshund and Jack Russell Terriers in the thoracic spine and French Bulldogs and large NCD breeds in the lumbar spine. An increasing neurological type and an IVDH in the thoracic spine had a negative impact on the clinical outcome: Small NCD breeds with type IV IVDH in the thoracic spine had the longest convalescence, whereas French Bulldogs with the same type of IVDH in the lumbar spine were quicker able to walk again.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


05 Veterinary Medicine > Department of Clinical Veterinary Medicine (DKV) > Small Animal Clinic

UniBE Contributor:

Forterre, Franck


500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
500 Science > 590 Animals (Zoology)
600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health








Manuel Roland Schmidli

Date Deposited:

04 Dec 2019 11:08

Last Modified:

04 Dec 2019 11:08

Publisher DOI:


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