We evaluate, diagnose, and treat a broad array of diseases that either primarily or secondarily affect the nervous system. If your pet is diagnosed with a condition affecting the central, peripheral, and/or autonomic nervous systems, including the brain, spinal cord, and network of nerves, we offer both medical and surgical options for the treatment of many common and rare neurological problems. In cases where we cannot cure, we can help manage the disease to give your pet the best quality of life possible.
Consider scheduling a neurological evaluation if your pet is experiencing neck and back pain, neurological causes of blindness, seizures, changes in mentation and personality, balance problems, muscle atrophy, weakness, exercise-induced weakness, abnormalities associated with prehending (grabbing) or swallowing food, tremors, or deafness.
Conditions we treat
Brain and spinal trauma
Injury to the brain or spinal cord that generally occurs due to an accident. If you suspect your pet may have sustained trauma, you should have your pet evaluated, even if it isn’t showing symptoms.
Brain and spinal tumors
Benign or cancerous tumors can put pressure on nearby normal tissue and cause symptoms like seizures, circling, “spacey” behavior, weakness and incoordination, and other signs.
Cranial nerve diseases
In some cases, inflammation or tumors can affect the nerves of the face and manifest as muscle atrophy, facial droop, or inability to hold the mouth closed.
A non-painful condition of the spinal cord, in which function is slowly lost to the rear limbs, causing weakness and incoordination. It is similar to Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, Lou Gehrig’s Disease) in people.
A spinal disc herniates (also known as a “slipped disc”) and causes pain in the back or neck, or the disc impinges on the spinal cord and nerves. Sometimes animals can lose the ability to walk normally (weakness and incoordination) and in severe cases, they are unable to move at all (paralysis).
Rapid onset of aggressive inflammation in the brain tissue that can be triggered by an infection or over-active immune system. Symptoms vary but may include seizures, circling, “spacey” behavior, weakness and incoordination, and other signs similar to dementia.
A brain condition where the normal fluid compartments, called ventricles, are enlarged. This can be congenital or secondary to other brain diseases. In dogs born with this condition (congenital), they often have domed-shaped head. Symptoms, if present, may include seizures, signs of dementia, or trouble house training.
Conditions that affect the nerve, muscle, and/or the neuromuscular junction, resulting in weakness.
Disturbances in brain function that can cause episodes of twitching, shaking, loss of awareness, and other signs.
Deformities in the vertebrae of the neck cause impingement on the spinal cord and results in issues with either movement or standing. This is more typical in large and giant dog breeds and can also cause weakness and an uncoordinated, wobbly gait.
- MRI of the spine or brain
- Cerebrospinal fluid collection with on-site analysis
- Epilepsy treatment and drug monitoring
- Encephalitis treatment
- Spinal surgery for disc herniation decompression
- Minimally-invasive spinal surgery
- Radiation therapy for brain and spinal tumors
- Neuropathic pain management
- Brain tumor biopsy and/or removal
- Spine surgery for tumor resection
- CT and PET of the spine or brain
- Degenerative myelopathy testing
- Myasthenia gravis testing
- Muscle and nerve biopsy
- BAER testing
- Electrophysiologic testing
We partner with the hospital’s diagnostic imaging service to provide advanced imaging technologies and services to our clients.
Using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), we are able to evaluate the brain and spinal cord of animals with neurological disease. Computerized tomography (CT) and positron emission tomography (PET) allow us to evaluate bony structures of the skull and spine, and the metabolic function of the brain.
We partner with the radiation therapy service in the Flint Animal Cancer Center to perform both stereotactic radiation therapy and intensity-modulated radiation therapy with the most advanced radiotherapy system in the country for animals with brain or spinal cord neoplasia.
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