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Sugar presented for evaluation of neurological behavior. She was circling to the right and appeared to be blind in the left eye. She also appeared to be weak on the left side of her body. After neurological examination and neurolocalization to the brain, it was recommended that Sugar undergo an MRI of her brain.

Iowa Veterinary Specialties has recently entered into a partnership with Iowa State University College of Veterinary Medicine to allow for outpatient advanced imaging, including CT and MRI, via transportation of the patient from IVS to ISU-CVM by IVS personnel in the new IVS transport vehicle. The college has an advanced and rapid CT that allows certain patients that may be at risk for anesthesia to undergo sedation only to image the areas of interest. Additionally, the MRI is available but requires general anesthesia. MRI is excellent for evaluation of the brain while CT is becoming widely used for evaluation of lung tissue as well as investigating a possible portosystemic shunt. If interested, please call to set up an appointment with the Internal Medicine Service at Iowa Veterinary Specialties to determine which advanced imaging diagnostics might be useful.

After the MRI, which revealed multiple intensities in the cortex and midbrain, Dr. Olsen obtained cerebral spinal fluid for analysis which revealed significant inflammation. Culture of the fluid did not reveal any organisms, and Sugar was initiated on immunosuppressive doses of steroids for suspected meningoencephalitis of unknown etiology. Sugar has begun to improve on the medications and will be closely monitored in the coming months to determine if additional medications may be needed.

Published on October 4, 2016

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