Fredrik I. Grünenfelder, Dominik Weishaupt, Ron Green, et al.
Fibrocartilaginous embolization (FCE) of the spinal cord is a common disease in large breed dogs. There are only a few reports about this entity in small breed dogs and it has never been reported in chondrodystrophic breed. For definitive diagnosis histopathologic examination is necessary. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as a potential diagnostic tool for intravitam diagnosis of FCE has been mentioned before, but results have not been reported so far. This report describes the neurological findings and MRI results in three small breed dogs, including a Pekingese dog, with FCE of the spinal cord. The disease was suspected in two animals based upon clinical and MRI-appearance and confirmed in the third by histopathological examination. In all three cases, similar focal intramedullary lesions, consisting of hyperintensive signals on T2-weighted images, were detected. Based on these findings, high-field MRI may be used as an antemortem tool for the diagnosis of FCE. It is also shown that FCE can occur in chondrodystrophic dogs.