Case Report: Hemilaminectomy Performed to Address Herniated Disk at L1-L2

Drew, a 12-year old male neutered Basset Hound, was brought into the Emergency Division of the Veterinary Referral Center of Northern Virginia for weakness in his hind end.

Drew’s Mom first noticed him acting strangely, being agitated, and shaking. She took Drew to his regular veterinarian and x-rays were done. Nothing was found on the x-rays so Drew was given an injection of an anti-inflammatory medication. He was sent home on pain and anti-inflammatory medications.

When the medications did not seem to help the weakness in his hind end Drew’s Mom brought him to the Emergency Division of the Veterinary Referral Center of Northern Virginia. No motor or conscious proprioception (normal placement of limbs) was found. However, deep pain was present so Drew would most likely be able to regain use of his hind limbs after surgery.

Drew was then transferred to the Surgery Division for an MRI to help pinpoint the area of concern. The MRI showed a herniated disk at L1-L2 (lumbar area of spine) with spinal cord compression. Dr. Morris took Drew to surgery immediately after the MRI for a hemilaminectomy. Dr. Morris removed a large amount of disk material, created excellent decompression, and noted that the spinal cord appeared normal.

Drew stayed with us for a week after surgery. He progressed very well and was pushing himself up and urinating and defecating on his own when he went home.

His Mom reports that Drew is progressing very well at home. This process requires a lot of patience as it can take six to eight weeks for all of the nerve regeneration to occur.

We are so happy that Drew’s Mom took a chance on this gentle, handsome boy. We all fell in love with him!