Behandeling nekhernia met acupunctuur bij de hond

Boefie couldn’t walk on her front paws

“Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.”
– Desmond Tutu

In this blog I describe the treatment of a neck hernia with acupuncture at Boefie.

Boefie, a sweet 12-year-old Chihuahua lady, had some diffifulties walking on her front paws for a little while, but it got worse and worse to the point that she could hardly use her front paws at all. Her vet suspected it was coming from her neck. A CT scan was made on which a double hernia was visible.

CT scan of a dog with a neck hernia. The treatment of a neck hernia with acupuncture.

Six weeks of pain relief and rest did not improve her symptoms. Boefie’s owner had almost given up hope. From one of the assistants she heard about the possibility of acupuncture and that’s how they ended up with me.

Boefie’s treatment

With Boefie we have used both “normal” acupuncture and electro-acupuncture. In electro-acupuncture I use a light current on the needles. As a result, acupuncture works stronger and we stimulate the nerves to go back to work. This does not hurt the animals treated with it.

When Boefie came to me the first time, she couldn’t walk on both her front legs. Proprioception was absent in both forelimbs. She had a stiff neck, a sore and stuck back, and proprioception of the hind legs was also delayed.

Proprioception is the conscious sensation about the position and movement of the limbs and other parts of the body in space and relative to each other.

When testing the proprioception, place a leg with the top on the ground. With a well-functioning nervous system, a signal is then sent to the brain that the leg is standing abnormal. The brain receives this signal and then sends a signal to the muscles to correct the abnormal position. Normally, within 1-3 seconds, an animal will put the paw back to a normal position. The absence of this reaction means that somewhere along the route of the signal to the brain and back again, something is not going well.

Immediately after the first treatment, Boefie’s back pain had disappeared and the proprioception in the right front leg was back. That gave hope! We are now four treatments further and Boefie can use both her front paws again!

And that makes Boefie, her owner and me very happy!

The treatment of a neck hernia with acupuncture

Research has shown that animals with a hernia that are treated with acupuncture recover faster, recover better and suffer less often from the return of the complaints.

Exactly how acupuncture works for hernias from a Western perspective is not (yet) fully known. There are probably several mechanisms that play a role. Modulation of the immunological and inflammatory response in the spinal cord is one of the possible mechanisms. In cases of IVDD, inflammation appears to be more important than compression in the onset of neurological signs. One study showed changes in 15 proteins in the spinal cord after treatment with acupuncture. These proteins are involved in processes such as inflammation and cell shifts and cell death. Electro acupuncture improves microcirculation and neuron morphology in the spinal cord.

In traditional Chinese medicine, a hernia is seen as a “Bony bi syndrome”. It is a literal stagnation (blockage) of the spinal cord. In most cases, there is an underlying deficiency. Often this is a Kidney Yin or Yang deficiency. With the acupuncture treatment it is therefore important to treat not only the stagnation of the spinal cord but also any underlying patterns. If we do not address the underlying patterns, the stagnation will return in no time.

I have already been able to help many animals with a hernia! Another example is Sara’s spinal hernia. You can read Sara’s story here . It remains incredibly rewarding work to help a paralyzed animal to be able to walk again.

I hope your buddy never gets a hernia. But if it does happen, think about acupuncture!

Holistische dierenarts. Acupunctuur, voedingsadvies en voedingstherapie voor honden en katten.

Hi, I am Anneke

On this blog I share information about acupuncture and nutrition for dogs and cats. New research, tips and recipes will also come along regularly. Have fun reading!
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