Percutaneous transvenous coil embolization of congenital intrahepatic portosystemic shunts in small- and toy-breed dogs: 20 cases (2015-2021)

J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2022 Jul 15;260(12):1526-1532. doi: 10.2460/javma.22.03.0143.


Objective: To describe outcomes of small- and toy-breed dogs with a congenital intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (IHPSS) treated with percutaneous transvenous coil embolization (PTCE).

Animals: 20 small- and toy-breed dogs with an IHPSS.

Procedures: All dogs underwent CT angiography for shunt evaluation as well as PTCE. Medical records were reviewed for pertinent data, and owners and primary veterinarians were contacted for long-term follow-up information.

Results: Dogs ranged from 1.5 to 10.0 kg (mean ± SD, 6.32 ± 2.57 kg) in weight. The equipment used to perform PTCE tended to be smaller than that previously described for larger breed dogs. Intra- and postoperative complication rates were 20% (4/20) and 5% (1/20), respectively, and included hypotension, bradycardia, hypercapnia, ventricular premature contractions, hypothermia, and regurgitation. Dogs were discharged a median of 3 days (range, 1 to 3 days) after surgery, and all dogs survived to discharge. Clinical signs resolved in 95% (19/20) of the dogs a median of 21 days after the procedure. One- and 2-year survival rates were 92%. Three dogs had died by the time of data collection; 2 of these dogs died of causes related to the IHPSS 267 and 1,178 days, respectively, after the procedure.

Clinical relevance: Percutaneous transvenous coil embolization was a safe and effective option for treatment of IHPSS in small- and toy-breed dogs and offered a minimally invasive alternative to open surgical techniques. Complication and survival rates in this cohort were similar to or better than those reported in previous studies evaluating PTCE and open surgical techniques for treatment of IHPSS in dogs.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Computed Tomography Angiography / veterinary
  • Dog Diseases* / surgery
  • Dogs
  • Embolization, Therapeutic* / veterinary
  • Portal System / abnormalities
  • Portal System / surgery
  • Portal Vein / abnormalities
  • Portal Vein / surgery
  • Portasystemic Shunt, Transjugular Intrahepatic* / veterinary
  • Retrospective Studies