Dr. Andrew Isaacs, DVM Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology) Dogwood Veterinary Referral Center

His primary interests include intervertebral disc disease, seizure management, luxations/fractures of the spine, and surgery for brain tumors
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Chiropractic therapy (aka VOM)
Saturday, June 11, 2011

Linda asks: Is chiropractic treatment a therapy that can be considered with a dog suspected or known to have IVDD?

The short answer is that I would not advise chiropractic care in a chondrodystrophic dog (Dachshund, Shih Tzu, Lhasa Apso, Pekingese, Basset Hound, Beagle, etc.) with clinical signs suggestive of intervertebral disk disease.
Without a diagnosis, the degree of spinal cord compression is unknown.  An adjustment to a dog with severe spinal cord compression could result in a deterioration of the clinical signs to the point of being completely paralyzed and maybe not being able to feel their toes.
Advanced imaging of the spine (MRI/CT/Myelogram) allows your veterinarian to make an informed decision.  In some cases, chiropractic treatment may warrant consideration.  However, without knowing what is causing the clinical signs it would not be advisable.  ~Andrew Isaacs, DVM

Thursday, May 23, 2013
Ann asks:  Why does Dodgerslist advise against chiropractic treatment?

This is a good question.

Chiropractic treatment is not bad if used in appropriate situations. It definitely has its place. I will occasionally advise that chiropractic treatment and/or acupuncture is worth considering for some cases where diagnostics have been performed.

The concern is the potential for chiropractic treatment to exacerbate clinical signs.

If you were having neurological deficits (paralysis) the standard of care would be to image (MRI) your back prior to any chiropractic adjustment. The same goes for your dogs.

I'm glad your dogs are responding well, but without imaging there is the risk of causing harm. Therefore, this is why Dodgers list discourages chiropractic treatment.

Please let me know if you have any other questions.

Andrew Isaacs, DVM
Diplomate ACVIM (Neurology)

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