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Animal Neurology Exam Klamath Falls OR

The four stages require a functional spinal cord and a functional brain, and they help us determine a lesion's severity. Reflexes tell us only where the lesion is localized.

Tigard Animal Hospital
(503) 575-7409
13599 Southwest Pacific Hwy
Tigard, OR
Hours
Monday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday 7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday 7:30 AM - 2:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Daycare, Animal Flea Control, Animal Grooming, Animal Microchipping, Declawing, Emergency Veterinary Clinic, Holistic Veterinary Medicine, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary Surgery, Veterinary Vaccinations

West Slope Veterinary Hospital
(503) 437-9320
10350 SW Canyon Rd.
Beaverton, OR
Hours
Monday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Friday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday 8:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Flea Control, Animal Microchipping, Declawing, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary Surgery, Veterinary Vaccinations

Prineville Veterinary Clinic
(541) 362-5444
350 NE Hickey Farms Rd
Prineville, OR
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Hours
Monday 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Friday 7:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Daycare, Animal Flea Control, Animal Microchipping, Bird Vet, Declawing, Emergency Veterinary Clinic, Equine Vet, Exotic Animal Vet, Large Animal Vet, Reptile Vet, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary House Calls, Veterinary Surgery, Veterinary Vaccinations

Seaside Pet Clinic
(503) 470-7240
900 24th Ave
Seaside, OR
Hours
Monday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Friday 8:30 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Flea Control, Animal Grooming, Animal Microchipping, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary House Calls, Veterinary Surgery, Veterinary Vaccinations

VCA Rock Creek Animal Hospital
(503) 924-7732
1445 NW 185th Ave
Aloha , OR
Hours
Monday 6:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Tuesday 6:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Wednesday 6:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Thursday 6:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Friday 6:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Saturday 8:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Sunday 8:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Services
Animal Flea Control, Animal Microchipping, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery, Veterinary Vaccinations

Kindness Family Vet
(503) 836-3304
2835 19th ave
Portland, OR
Hours
Monday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Daycare, Animal Flea Control, Animal Grooming, Animal Microchipping, Bird Vet, Declawing, Emergency Veterinary Clinic, Equine Vet, Exotic Animal Vet, Holistic Veterinary Medicine, Large Animal Vet, Reptile Vet, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary House Calls, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery

Alpine Veterinary Hospital
(541) 716-1947
300 Frankton Road
Hood River, OR
Hours
Monday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Flea Control, Animal Microchipping, Declawing, Equine Vet, Holistic Veterinary Medicine, Large Animal Vet, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Docking, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary House Calls, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery

VCA West Linn Animal Hospital
(503) 689-8749
19343 Willamette Drive
West Linn , OR
Hours
Monday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Daycare, Animal Flea Control, Animal Microchipping, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery

Rose City Veterinary Hospital
(503) 689-8817
809 SE Powell Blvd.
Portland, OR
Hours
Monday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Tuesday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Wednesday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Thursday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Friday 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Saturday 9:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Daycare, Animal Flea Control, Animal Microchipping, Declawing, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery

VCA 12-Mile Animal Hospital
(503) 967-5264
21920 SE Stark St
Gresham, OR
Hours
Monday 7:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday 7:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Wednesday 7:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday 7:00 AM - 8:00 PM
Friday 7:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday Closed
Services
Animal Boarding, Animal Daycare, Animal Flea Control, Animal Grooming, Animal Microchipping, Small Animal Vet, Spaying/Neutering, Veterinarians, Veterinary Dentistry, Veterinary Euthanasia, Veterinary Medical Specialties, Veterinary Surgery

Making Sense of the Neuro Exam

The neurological exam seems to be one of the most confusing concepts in veterinary medicine. Let’s try to clarify things. To simplify, we will focus on the hind legs only.

One way to look at the neuro exam is to divide it into an assessment of “the four stages” and an evaluation of four reflexes.

The patellar reflex causes extension of the stifle. Photo courtesy of Dr. Phil Zeltzman.
The four stages require a functional spinal cord and a functional brain, and they help us determine a lesion’s severity. Reflexes tell us only where the lesion is localized.

Since I am a surgeon and not a neurologist, I talked to Todd Bishop, DVM, Dipl. ACVIM (neurology), of Upstate Veterinary Specialties in Latham, N.Y., to ensure the accuracy of the following information.

Decline Into Nociception

Patients might go through four stages between normalcy and being paralyzed with no deep pain:

  • First-stage patients may feel back pain. They can exhibit pain by vocalizing. Certain breeds, such as beagles, are especially good at expressing their feelings. Others may arch their back.
    .
  • As they get worse, patients may become ataxic or lose proprioception. When a patient knuckles, or doesn’t reposition a flipped paw within a couple of seconds, we say he has proprioceptive deficits.
    .
  • The next step is loss of conscious motor function. This means voluntary motion of the hind legs is weak, even if helped by a sling.
    .
  • The last step is loss of pain sensation, or nociception. It is tested by using a hemostat to pinch a toe. Though nobody enjoys performing this test, doing it correctly is critical. We are trying to cause a painful reaction by stimulating the periosteum of the phalanges.

When a deep pain sensation is present, the patient should have a voluntary reaction such as whining, trying to bite or moving away from the painful stimulus. A very stoic patient may show only dilatation of the pupils.

The order of these four stages is fixed. They occur in the same order and always return in the reverse order. Therefore, there is no need to crush a toe in a patient who has motor function. If he has motor function, he has deep pain by definition. Purists will argue that this is not true with a “spinal walker,” but let’s keep things simple.

The Spinal Cord

The cranial tibial reflex causes flexion of the hock. Photo courtesy of Dr. Phil Zeltzman.
Incidentally, these four stages correlate with the anatomy of the spinal cord. Nerve fibers involved with proprioception are located superficially in the cord. This explains why a mild lesion has mild effects on the patient.

A deeper lesion will affect the nerve fibers that control motor function. And a very severe lesion will apply pressure in the deepest nerve fibers—those that relay deep pain.

These four stages help us determine the severity of the lesion. A dog with proprioceptive deficits is mildly affected. At the other end of the spectrum, a dog with n...

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