Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Transitional vertebrae

Contributor(s): Kyle Braund

Introduction

  • Clinically insignificant and usually noted as an incidental finding.
  • Vertebrae have properties of two major sections of the vertebral column.
  • Caudal cervical vertebrae may have transverse processes that resemble ribs.
  • Sacralization occurs where the 7th lumbar vertebra fuses to the first sacral vertebra.
  • Sacral vertebrae may occasionally have transverse processes like lumbar vertebrae.

Pathogenesis

Predisposing factors

General

  • Presently unknown.

Specific

  • Presently unknown.

Pathophysiology

  • Congenital anomalies of the vertebral column are due to improper embryogenesis or to abnormal growth and development secondary to improper embryogenesis.
  • Each vertebra is derived from the caudal half of one somite and the cranial half of another.
  • The intervertebral disk develops between vertebrae.
  • The nucleus pulposus is the remnant of the notochord.
  • Failure of correct segmentation results in vertebral anomalies such as block, hemi and transitional vertebrae.

Timecourse

  • Months or years in dogs that develop degenerative lumbosacral stenosis.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Damur-Djuric N, Steffen F, Hässig M, Morgan J P, Flückiger M A (2006) Lumbosacral transitional vertebrae in dogs: classification, prevalence, and association with sacroiliac morphology. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 47 (1), 32-38 PubMed.
  • Flückiger M A, Damur-Djuric N, Hässig M, Morgan J P, Steffen F (2006) A lumbosacral transitional vertebra in the dog predisposes to cauda equina syndrome. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 47 (1), 39-44 PubMed.
  • Scharf G, Steffen F, Grünenfelder F, Morgan J P, Flückiger M (2004) The lumbosacral junction in working german shepherd dogs - neurological and radiological evaluation. J Vet Med A Physiol Pathol Clin Med 51 (1), 27-32 PubMed.
  • Breit S, Knaus I, Künzel W (2003) Differentiation between lumbosacral transitional vertebrae, pseudolumbarisation, and lumbosacral osteophyte formation in ventrodorsal radiographs of the canine pelvis. Vet J 165 (1), 36-42 PubMed.
  • Jones J C, Inzana K D (2000) Subclinical CT abnormalities in the lumbosacral spine of older large-breed dogs. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 41 (1), 19-26 PubMed.
  • Morgan J P, Wind A, Davidson A P (1999) Bone dysplasias in the labrador retriever - a radiographic study. JAAHA 35 (4), 332-340 PubMed.
  • Morgan J P (1999) Transitional lumbosacral vertebral anomaly in the dog: a radiographic study. JSAP 40 (4), 167-172 PubMed.
  • Herling A, Loeffler K, Schimke E (1998) Anomalies of the pelvic girdle at the caudal end of the sacroiliac joint in the dogs. Kleintierpraxis 43 (11), 807-812 VetMedResource.
  • Schultz V A, Watson A G (1995) Lumbosacral transitional vertebra and thoracic limb malformations in a Chihuahua puppy. JAAHA 31 (2), 101-106 PubMed.
  • Mattoon J S & Koblick P D (1993) Quantitative survey radiographic evaluation of the lumbosacral spine of normal dogs and dogs with degenerative lumbosacral stenosis. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 34 (3), 194-206 VetMedResource.
  • Morgan J P et al (1993) Lumbosacral transitional vertebrae as a predisposing cause of cauda equina syndrome in German shepherd dogs - 161 cases (1987-1990). JAVMA 202 (11), 1877-1882 PubMed.


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