Symptoms of a Spinal Cord Injury

Not all neurological disorders stem from problems in the brain. Injury to the spinal cord can interfere with nerve messaging, resulting a wide array of neurological symptoms. The Animal Neurology & Imaging Center (The ANIC) provides advanced diagnostics and treatment for spinal cord injury.

What to Look For

feline spinalObservable symptoms of spinal cord injury typically involve your pet’s walking. Symptoms of spinal cord injury are often progressive. You may notice:

Loss of coordination, like scuffing of toes à staggering à complete loss of uses of one or more limbs

However, spinal cord injury may not be noticeable until an inciting event, so symptoms can present suddenly, too.

Common Causes of Spinal Cord Injury

Spinal cord injury can, of course, be caused by severe trauma, like a car accident. However, low-level trauma (like jumping out of a car) can result in injury if your pet’s spinal column has already been compromised by:

  • Disc disease (see slipped disc)
  • Autoimmune inflammation
  • Inherited anatomic abnormalities

Natural degeneration of cartilage because of age can also increase your pet’s risk of spinal cord injury.

See our client resources for more information on spinal cord disorders.

Treatment for Spinal Cord Injury

What your pet needs for spinal cord injury treatment is determined by the cause for the injury. For instance, if the injury was caused by a disc rupture, the treatment is spinal surgery. If the injury was the result of inflammation, medication to manage the underlying condition may be the best course of treatment.

The doctors at The ANIC will help you understand all possible treatment options once a full diagnosis has been reached. To get your pet the advanced neurological care they need, contact us to schedule an exam. If your pet is in severe pain or symptoms of spinal cord injury present suddenly, please call us for a consultation to determine if your pet requires emergency services.

Loss of coordination may be an early sign of spinal cord injury. Contact us for advanced diagnostic imaging and treatment.

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