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Information For Your Veterinarian

Backscoring Procedure

Step by Step for the Veterinarian performing the Radiography

Intervertebral disc disease (IDD): Instructions for radiography according to the Finnish Kennel Club protocol
Anu Lappalainen / 13.6.2015
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General instructions:

The dog must be sedated for the radiography and the microchip must be checked. The radiographs must be marked permanently (e.g. lead tape)with the dog’s registration number or microchip number and the date of the radiography. The side marking is mandatory in the ventrodorsal projection.


In all images, the spine must be parallel to the table without rotation of the spine. Use foam rubber supports (Figure 1). All disc spaces must be clearly visible.

At least a minimum of 5 radiographs are needed:

1) Lateral cervical spine (C1-C7) (Figure 2). The front limbs are pulled back. Centering in the mid cervical spine.

2) Lateral cervico – thoracic junction (Figure 3). Centering in the C-T junction.

3) Lateral thoracic spine = C7 – L1 covered, preferably in one image (Figure 4).

4) Lateral thoracic-lumbar junction (Figure 5). Centering in the T-L junction.

5) Lateral lumbar spine = T13 – Cd1 covered preferably in one image (Figure 6). If this is not possible, two radiographs are made (T13 – L7 and L5 – Cd1. The cranial border of the iliac bones can be used as a landmark for identification of the vertebrae.

Figure 1.
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Figure 2. Cervical spine
Figure 3. C-T junction
Figure 4. Thoracic spine
Figure 5. T-L junction
Figure 6. Lumber spine