Computer-assisted radiographic calculation of spinal curvature in brachycephalic "screw-tailed" dog breeds with congenital thoracic vertebral malformations: reliability and clinical evaluation

Julien Guevar, Jacques Penderis, Kiterie Faller, Carmen Yeamans, Catherine Stalin, Rodrigo Gutierrez-Quintana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The objectives of this study were: To investigate computer-assisted digital radiographic measurement of Cobb angles in dogs with congenital thoracic vertebral malformations, to determine its intra- and inter-observer reliability and its association with the presence of neurological deficits. Medical records were reviewed (2009-2013) to identify brachycephalic screw-tailed dog breeds with radiographic studies of the thoracic vertebral column and with at least one vertebral malformation present. Twenty-eight dogs were included in the study. The end vertebrae were defined as the cranial end plate of the vertebra cranial to the malformed vertebra and the caudal end plate of the vertebra caudal to the malformed vertebra. Three observers performed the measurements twice. Intraclass correlation coefficients were used to calculate the intra- and inter-observer reliabilities. The intraclass correlation coefficient was excellent for all intra- and inter-observer measurements using this method. There was a significant difference in the kyphotic Cobb angle between dogs with and without associated neurological deficits. The majority of dogs with neurological deficits had a kyphotic Cobb angle higher than 35°. No significant difference in the scoliotic Cobb angle was observed. We concluded that the computer assisted digital radiographic measurement of the Cobb angle for kyphosis and scoliosis is a valid, reproducible and reliable method to quantify the degree of spinal curvature in brachycephalic screw-tailed dog breeds with congenital thoracic vertebral malformations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e106957
JournalPLoS ONE
Volume9
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Animals
  • Congenital Abnormalities
  • Dogs
  • Female
  • Image Processing, Computer-Assisted
  • Male
  • Observer Variation
  • Radiography
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Spine
  • Thoracic Vertebrae
  • Journal Article

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