Atlantooccipital overlapping and its effect on outcomes after ventral fixation in dogs with atlantoaxial instability.

Takahashi et al., J Vet Med Sci. 2018 Feb 5 [Epub ahead of print]

We compared clinical outcomes after ventral fixation in dogs with atlantoaxial instability (AAI) on the basis of the presence or absence of atlantooccipital overlapping (AOO).

Of 41 dogs diagnosed with AAI and treated ventral fixation, 12 exhibited AOO (AOO group), whereas 29 did not (non-AOO group).

The AOO group had significantly higher neurological scores before (P=0.024) and 1 month after (P=0.033) surgery compared with the non-AOO group; however, no significant differences were observed between the groups 2 months after surgery.

The presence of complicating AOO affected the clinical signs for dogs with AAI, but did not directly affect the outcome of surgical stabilization of AAI.