A reference guide for veterinary professionals interested in Chiari -Like Malformation and Syringomyelia. This guide was made possible by the New York Veterinary Foundation (www.NYVF.ORG), a non profit 501 C3 dedicated to “Bridging The Divide Between Human and Veterinary Medicine”. The intellectual efforts have been donated by the individual authors, all of whom are regarded as leading experts in the subject and hold board certification in either or both of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine and the European College of Veterinary Neurologists. This resource is being made available to interested professionals as a free download.
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Chiari-like malformation(CLM) is a condition in which a portion of the cerebellum descends through the foramen magnum affecting normal cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) flow. The specific cause has not been determined; however, compressive malformations in the caudal fossa, volume mismatches between the cerebellum, brain stem and the caudal fossa, or the loss of the collagenous suspensory mechanism of the cerebellum may play a role in the cerebellar descent. The subsequent changes in CSF flow dynamics result in hypertrophy of the regional meninges and eventual dural fibrosis. The well documented change in CSF pressure and flow velocity can cause an abnormal accumulation of fluid within the substance of the spinal cord called a “syrinx” or syringomyelia in affected patients. Cervical hyperesthesia, pruritis and spinal lumbar hyperpathia are common clinical findings. It is considered to be a hereditary condition in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and is commonly confused with many other conditions. Chiari-like malformation affects small breed dogs and has been found in several cats.