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Comparison of Computed Tomography and Myelography to a Reference Standard of Computed Tomographic Myelography for Evaluation of Dogs with Intervertebral Disc Disease

Authors

  • Brent Newcomb DVM, MS,

    Corresponding author
    • College of Veterinary Medicine, Oklahoma State University, OK
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  • Jason Arble DVM, MS Diplomate ACVR,

  • Mark Rochat DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVS,

  • Robert Pechman DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVR,

  • Mark Payton PhD


  • Funded in part by the Resident Advisory Committee and the Cohn Family Chair for Companion Animals at Oklahoma State University.

Corresponding Author

Brent Newcomb, DVM, MS, Veterinary Surgery Center, 13551 N. Indiana Ave., Oklahoma City, OK, 73134

E-mail: brenttn@gmail.com

Abstract

Objective

To compare the sensitivity of computed tomography (CT) and myelography to a reference standard of CT myelography for determining localization of Type I intervertebral disc extrusions in dogs.

Study Design

Prospective blinded comparative study.

Animals

Dogs with acute onset myelopathy because of suspected disc extrusions (n = 30).

Methods

Dogs had CT, myelography, and CT myelography to diagnose disc extrusions. Sensitivity of CT and myelography was compared to CT myelography for lateral, longitudinal, and combined localization. Confidence in the assessment of each imaging study was scored by 3 reviewers.

Results

Sensitivity of CT for lateral, longitudinal, and combined localization was 94%, 91%, and 81%, respectively, and was 64%, 74%, and 53%, respectively for myelography. Sensitivity of all 3 categories of localization was significantly different between modalities (P < .0001, P = .0031, P < .0001). Significant differences in the sensitivity of lateral and combined localization were found between confidence scores for myelography (P < .0001, P < .0001). Significant differences in the sensitivity of lateral, longitudinal, and combined localization were found between confidence scores for CT (P = .011, P = .013, P = .027). Poor sensitivity was obtained for both modalities except when imaging studies were assigned the highest confidence score.

Conclusions

CT is a more sensitive imaging technique than myelography for localizing disc extrusions when compared to a reference standard of CT myelography. Both modalities yielded high sensitivity with the highest confidence score and poor sensitivity for all other confidence scores.

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