Computed tomographic appearance of masticatory myositis in dogs: 7 cases (1999-2006)

Reiter AM, Schwarz T.

J Am Vet Med Assoc 2007;231:924-930.

OBJECTIVE: To document computed tomography (CT) features in dogs with masticatory myositis. DESIGN: Retrospective case series. ANIMALS: 7 dogs with an immunologic diagnosis of masticatory myositis and an absence of clinical abnormalities of any skeletal muscles other than the masticatory muscles. PROCEDURES: History; clinical, hematologic, biochemical, immunologic, cytologic, and histologic findings; and pre- and postcontrast CT imaging features of masticatory muscles and head and neck lymph nodes were extracted from medical records. RESULTS: On CT images, changes in size (atrophy or swelling) were common for all masticatory muscles except the digastricus muscles, which were involved only in 1 dog. Pre-contrast attenuation changes, most often hypoattenuation with varied distribution patterns, were seen in masticatory muscles of 4 dogs. Contrast enhancement with a predominantly inhomogeneous distribution pattern was seen in the temporalis, masseter, and pterygoid muscles of all dogs. Head and neck lymph nodes were enlarged in all but 1 dog and had contrast enhancement with predominantly central or homogeneous distribution patterns. Muscle biopsy was performed in 6 dogs, with biopsy specimens obtained from areas that had the most obvious contrast enhancement on CT images. For all 6 dogs, biopsy specimens had histologic features indicative of masticatory myositis. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Results suggested that CT may be a useful adjunct in the diagnosis of masticatory myositis in dogs, including selection of sites for diagnostic muscle biopsy.