Hip Radiographs - Information to the Veterinary

The Swedish Maine Coon Cat Club was founded to care for the health of the Maine Coon breed and to promote its future existence. One part of our work for improved health was to start a health programme to reduce the hip dysplasia incidence in Maine Coons.

As of June 1, 2010 the health programme will be run directly by PawPeds.

We collaborate with the veterinary and radiograph expert Elisabeth Ball who evaluates all the hip radiographs on behalf of the health programme. We believe that it is very important that these radiographs are evaluated by one person only, in order to get as consistent an evaluation as possible. Below you will find some brief information on how the cat should be radiographed and how to fill in and use the original form for Hip Radiograph. Cat owners with breeds other than the Maine Coon are welcome to use the same form.

IMPORTANT: Please note that the cat has to have an identification such as a microchip or a tattoo and you should verify that this is correct. The ID-number should be put on the radiograph.

It is also very important that our original form is used: One part of the original form is to be filled in by the cat owner and the second part by the veterinary. On this form, the owner should have signed that permission is given to send in the results to the public registry before the radiographs are made. We need sufficient submissions to evaluate the correct frequency of HD in the breeds to see the effect of testing on later generations. Also, you will find the address of Elisabeth Ball where the radiographs have to be sent to on this form.

We recommend that the cat is not given a sedative (injection) since it may have minor effects on the outcome of the evaluation. However, if it is necessary then a mild sedatative (injection) is recommended before the radiograph to facilitate positioning the cat. The cat should however not be heavily sedated.

The same routines should be used as radiographing a dog’s hips. The pelvis and the knee joints should be seen on the radiographs. The legs should lie parallel and the knee joint should lie in a straight line with the thighbone. The legs should not to be rotated inwards or outwards.

The pictures should be saved in DICOM format, and they should *not* be compressed. You can send them either on CD or USB. Emailing the pictures for evaluation is not possible at this time.

The evaluation grades on the scale used are the same ones as for hip radiographing dogs, but due to the fact that the anatomical picture is different for cats the usual “Norberg’s angle” is not used. This means that we do not use the ABCD evaluation scale. Instead we use “normal”, “1”, “2” and “3”.

NOTE: The radiographs together with the original form duly filled in and signed, should then be sent by the veterinary to the following address for evaluation:

Universitetsdjursjukhuset UDS
Att: Elisabeth Ball
Box 7040
SE-750 07 Uppsala

If you wish to be informed of the results, the cat owner will be able to provide you with copies of the evaluation results.