It’s nerve-racking when your pet is having a neurological issue and we know that you want help right away. That’s where our board-certified veterinary neurologists come in. We work with your primary veterinarian, creating a team of veterinarians and specialists dedicated to the care of your pet.
Collaborating with our Emergency & Critical Care Department, our neurologists are able to provide care for your pet around the clock.
Neurology is a very specialized branch of medicine, where dedicated and highly qualified doctors treat diseases of the nervous system – a system that helps our pets function in normal ways, mainly consisting of the brain, spinal cord, nerves, and muscles. However, when something in this system goes wrong, pets can exhibit worrisome symptoms—and we’re here to get to the bottom of it.
Some of the most common signs of neurological disease are:
- Limb weakness, paresis, or lack of movement (plegia)
- Balance disorders (vertigo and vestibular dysfunction)
- Blindness and other vision issues
- Seizures or abnormal movements
- Behavior changes including cognitive decline/dementia
- Muscle atrophy or lameness
- Pain or discomfort
These signs are combined with the findings of a detailed neurological examination, which is the most important part of the neurological work-up. It can provide vital clues to the underlying cause of your pet’s symptoms and allows us to localize the source of the problem to the specific part of the nervous system it arises from.
Performing a good neurological examination requires a thorough understanding of the underlying circuitry of the nervous system and is a skill our neurologists have spent many years perfecting. Once this detailed examination has been performed, further recommendations can be made, including any additional diagnostics or treatment that may be necessary for the identified condition.
Diagnostics may include a host of the state-of-the-art equipment our neurology team has access to, such as:
- 1.5 Tesla High Field – GE MRI (A step above the industry standard)
- 16-slice spiral CT scanner (CAT scan)
- Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis
- Muscle and nerve biopsy
- Electromyography (EMG, NCVS, BAER, RNS, and sensory evoked potentials)
- Electroencephalography (EEG)
Once a diagnosis is made, the problem may be treated medically or surgically. Our neurologists have been extensively trained in the most advanced neurosurgical procedures including neck, back, and brain surgery, at some of the most renowned veterinary hospitals in the world. They’re available during office hours as well as on-call 24×7 for any neurologic emergencies.
Common medically treated neurological conditions:
- Complex/refractory seizures
- Immune-mediated diseases
- Myasthenia Gravis
- Optic neuritis
- Inflammatory diseases of the brain and spinal cord
- Granulomatous meningoencephalitis (GME)
- Meningoencephalomyelitis of unknown etiology (MUE)
- Infectious diseases of the brain and spinal cord
- Infectious disease of the spine (diskospondylitis)
- Metabolic disease
- Disk disease
- Caudal Occipital Malformation/Chiari-Like malformation
- Degenerative diseases
- Movement disorders
- Disk disease
- Dorsal laminectomy
- Ventral slot
- LS surgery
- Cervical spondylomyelopathy (Wobbler’s syndrome)
- Brain tumors
- Congenital diseases
- Caudal occipital malformation syndrome (COMS or Chiari)
- Hydrocephalus (ventriculoperitoneal shunt)
- Spinal fractures and/or luxations
- Plate placement
- AA and AO stabilizations
Click here to read about some of the day-to-day activities in our neurology departments.