Veterinary Record 173:19 doi:10.1136/vr.101361
  • Research
  • Short communication

Lumbosacral osteochondrosis in cats

  1. F. Y. Hanna, BVSs, MRCVS, CERT SAO
  1. 3 Rosebery Avenue, Eastbourne BN22 9QA, UK
  1. E-mail for correspondence: pastina5{at}

To describe a previously undescribed, rare feline presentation of lumbosacral osteochondrosis in nine cats that was supported by histopathological examination findings of the fragments which were removed surgically. Retrospective medical records search based on the diagnosis of lumbosacral osteochondrosis in cats was carried out in all hospital records. All cats were referred to the author between 1996 and 2011 with the assumption that all had some form of arthritis, but no definite diagnosis had been made prior to referral. Survey radiography and myelographic studies of the lumbosacral junction were performed in all cats. All surgically removed fragments were submitted to a specialist laboratory for histopathalogical examination. Nine cats with lumbosacral osteochondrosis were identified from the hospital records. Cats with lumbosacral osteochondrosis were older than 11 months (mean age was 2.6 years); six males and three females were affected (2 : 1) but no breed predisposition was evident. However, there were more Persian and Siamese cats than other breeds in this study. The osteochondral fragment (s) appeared to be originating from the sacrum in six cats, from L7 in two cats, and from both L7 and S1 in one cat. All cats were treated surgically, The outcome was considered satisfactory (either improved or recovered) in six cats (67 per cent), In three cats, cases 2, 3 and 9, the improvement was temporary. In two cats, cases 1 and 8, the improvement was permanent, and complete recovery was achieved in four cats, cases 4, 5, 6 and 7. The diagnosis of osteochondrosis was confirmed on histopathalogical examination of the fragments which were removed surgically. This study describes previously undocumented aetiological factor in the pathogenesis of cauda equina in cats. Recognition of the lesion in survey radiography, determining the contribution of the osteochondral lesion in compressing the nerve roots of the cauda equina, and assessing the grade …

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