Dorsal laminectomy to relieve spinal cord compression in a captive syrian bear (Ursus arctos syriacus)

Ariela Rosenzweig Büeler, Yael Merbl, Yishai Kushnir, Orit Chai, Itzhak Aizenberg, Igal Horowitz, Einat Matalon, Doron Tam, Merav H. Shamir*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


A 19-yr-old captive male Syrian bear (Ursus arctos syriacus) presented with a right hind limb lameness that progressed to nonambulatory paraparesis over the course of 2 wk. When night enclosure confinement and a short course of glucocorticoids and antibiotics did not lead to improvement, radiographs were performed, followed by cerebrospinal fluid analysis and myelography, revealing a dynamic spinal cord compression at the level of T2-T3. Dorsal laminectomy of both T2 and T3 was performed to allow decompression. The bear recovered uneventfully with first sign of neurological improvement apparent at 10 days postoperatively. Following 6 mo of rehabilitation the bear was walking and using his hind limbs normally.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)1105-1108
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Copyright 2016 by American Association of Zoo Veterinarians.


  • Dorsal laminectomy
  • Physiotherapy
  • Spinal cord compression
  • Syrian bear
  • Ursus arctos syriacus


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