What Happens During a Gastropexy Surgery?
During a gastropexy surgery, the dog’s stomach is first sutured or “tacked” to the abdominal wall in the proper position. This prevents the stomach from rotating and twisting in the case that it was to fill with gas. The procedure does not fully prevent a dog from experiencing bloat, but it greatly reduces the life-threatening consequences associated.
When a gastropexy surgery is performed in an emergency manner, prior to tacking the stomach to the abdominal wall, the stomach will first be de-rotated or untwisted. The pressure on the stomach wall and internal organs need to be reduced as soon as possible. This may be done by passing a stomach tube. If that is not possible due to the rotation of the stomach, a large catheter may be inserted through the skin into the stomach to alleviate the pressure within the stomach. In addition to this, shock treatment needs to begin immediately, typically using intravenous fluids and emergency medications.
Once the dog becomes stable and is able to undergo anesthesia and the stomach has been restored to its proper position, the gastropexy portion of the surgery will occur. The tacking will be performed to prevent the issue from occurring again in the future.
Breeds with a tendency to bloat
Large dogs — especially those with deep, narrow chests — are more likely to bloat than smaller dogs. The following are just some of the breeds known to be at a higher risk of bloat:
However, its important to note that even small dogs, such as dachshunds and Chihuahuas, can bloat.
While scientists are still not sure of the exact causes of bloat, the following are believed to increase a dogs risk of GDV:
Age can be another factor. In fact, a dogs risk of bloat increases by 20% for each year of age.
What Does Gastropexy Surgery Treat in Dogs?
Gastropexy surgery is performed to either prevent or treat gastric dilatation and volvulus (GDV), also known as bloat. The surgery may be performed in a preventative or emergency manner. It is often recommended as a preventative measure for large breed dogs with deep barrel chests such as the Boxer and Great Dane.
During an episode of bloat, the dog’s stomach dilates and fills with air or fluid. Sometimes, the condition of bloat may stop there, however, it often progresses into volvulus, which is full GDV. This is where the life-threatening emergency comes in. When a dog is experiencing full GDV, the stomach twists upon itself. This causes the entrance and exit of the stomach to become blocked.
Bloat – #1 Killer of Large Breed Dogs – How to Prevent It
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Dr. Stephanie received her Bachelor of Science (Maj. Vet tech) from the University of Queensland, Australia, in 2006. After graduation, she moved to the other side of her beautiful, sunny country, to the most isolated city in the world (Perth, Australia), to begin her veterinary degree at Murdoch University. 5 years later, she received a dual degree in Veterinary Biology and Veterinary Medicine and Surgery.
After all this schooling, Dr. Stephanie packed her things, her beloved Labrador & fluffy cat, and made the big move to the USA. She lives and practices at a clinic in the “big apple.”
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