Fibrocartilaginous embolic myelopathy in a calf

Jennifer A. Landolfi, Geoffrey K. Saunders, William S. Swecker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A 5-month-old Angus heifer with a history of acute hindlimb paresis that quickly progressed to lateral recumbency was necropsied. Gross lesions included a 6-cm segment of gray to brown discoloration and softening of the right ventrolateral spinal cord between T2 and T3. Microscopically, there was liquefactive necrosis of ventrolateral white and gray matter, and multiple intravascular emboli partially or completely occluded many intralesional and adjacent spinal and meningeal arteries and veins. Emboli were alcian blue positive, consistent with fibrocartilage of the nucleus pulposus of the intervertebral disk. No gross abnormalities were detected in the vertebrae or intervertebral disks. Fibrocartilaginous embolic myelopathy appears to be very rare in cattle; however, it should be considered in cases of acute, nonprogressive spinal cord dysfunction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)360-362
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Veterinary


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