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Emerging and Adjunctive Therapies for Spinal Cord Injury Following Acute Canine Intervertebral Disc Herniation

Lewis, M J; Granger, N; Jeffery, N D; The Canine Spinal Cord Injury Consortium (CANSORT-SCI)


M J Lewis

N Granger

N D Jeffery

The Canine Spinal Cord Injury Consortium (CANSORT-SCI)


Sarah A. Moore

Natasha J. Olby

Kady M. Gjessing

Rhanna M. Davidson

Jonathan M. Levine

Helen McWhorter

Melissa J. Lewis

Nick D. Jeffery

Maureen E. Mullins

Ronaldo Casimiro da Costa

Yvette S. Nout-Lomas

Joe Fenn

Nicolas Granger

Ingo Spitzbarth

Veronika M. Stein

Andrea Tipold

Ji-Hey Lim

Holger Volk


Some dogs do not make a full recovery following medical or surgical management of acute canine intervertebral disc herniation (IVDH), highlighting the limits of currently available treatment options. The multitude of difficulties in treating severe spinal cord injury are well-recognized, and they have spurred intense laboratory research, resulting in a broad range of strategies that might have value in treating spinal cord-injured dogs. These include interventions that aim to directly repair the spinal cord lesion, promote axonal sparing or regeneration, mitigate secondary injury through neuroprotective mechanisms, or facilitate functional compensation. Despite initial promise in experimental models, many of these techniques have failed or shown mild efficacy in clinical trials in humans and dogs, although high quality evidence is lacking for many of these interventions. However, the continued introduction of new options to the veterinary clinic remains important for expanding our understanding of the mechanisms of injury and repair and for development of novel and combined strategies for severely affected dogs. This review outlines adjunctive or emerging therapies that have been proposed as treatment options for dogs with acute IVDH, including discussion of local or lesion-based approaches as well as systemically applied treatments in both acute and subacute-to-chronic settings. These interventions include low-level laser therapy, electromagnetic fields or oscillating electrical fields, adjunctive surgical techniques (myelotomy or durotomy), systemically or locally-applied hypothermia, neuroprotective chemicals, physical rehabilitation, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, electroacupuncture, electrical stimulation of the spinal cord or specific peripheral nerves, nerve grafting strategies, 4-aminopyridine, chondroitinase ABC, and cell transplantation.


Lewis, M. J., Granger, N., Jeffery, N. D., & The Canine Spinal Cord Injury Consortium (CANSORT-SCI), . (2020). Emerging and Adjunctive Therapies for Spinal Cord Injury Following Acute Canine Intervertebral Disc Herniation. Frontiers in Veterinary Science, 7, 579933

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Sep 4, 2020
Publication Date Oct 15, 2020
Deposit Date Oct 29, 2020
Publicly Available Date Oct 29, 2020
Journal Frontiers in Veterinary Science
Publisher Frontiers Media
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 7
Pages 579933
Keywords Veterinary Science, alternative therapies, interventions, dog, intervertebral disc disease, cell transplantation, spinal cord injury, canine
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