Factors associated with perioperative mortality in dogs with surgically managed gastric dilatation-volvulus: 137 cases (1988-1993)

J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1996 Jun 1;208(11):1855-8.


Objective: To evaluate factors associated with perioperative mortality in dogs with gastric dilatation-volvulus and to determine the influence of treatment differences between university and private specialty practices on outcome.

Design: Retrospective analysis of medical records.

Animals: 137 dogs with gastric dilatation-volvulus.

Procedure: Signalment; frequency of preoperative and postoperative treatments and complications; intraoperative findings; surgical technique; and hematologic, serum biochemical, and electrocardiographic results were recorded, evaluated for association with mortality, and compared between institutions.

Results: Mortality did not differ between institutions, and overall mortality was 18% (24/137). Surgical techniques differed between institutions, but were not associated with mortality. Gastric necrosis was associated with significantly higher mortality (46%; 13/28). When partial gastrectomy or splenectomy was performed, mortality (35 and 32% or 8/23 and 10/31, respectively) was significantly increased. Splenectomy was performed in 11 of 23 dogs requiring partial gastrectomy, and when both procedures were performed, mortality (55%; 6/11) was significantly increased. Preoperative cardiac arrhythmias were associated with significantly higher mortality (38%; 6/16). Mortality in dogs > 10 years old was not significantly greater than that in younger dogs.

Clinical implications: Patient management differences between practices did not seem to influence survival in dogs with surgically managed gastric dilatation-volvulus. Signalment, including age, did not influence mortality. Gastric necrosis, gastric resection, splenectomy, and preoperative cardiac arrhythmias were associated with mortality > 30%.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / complications
  • Arrhythmias, Cardiac / veterinary
  • Dog Diseases / mortality*
  • Dog Diseases / surgery*
  • Dogs
  • Female
  • Gastric Dilatation / complications
  • Gastric Dilatation / mortality
  • Gastric Dilatation / surgery
  • Gastric Dilatation / veterinary*
  • Male
  • Necrosis / veterinary
  • Postoperative Complications / veterinary
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Risk Factors
  • Splenectomy / veterinary
  • Stomach / pathology
  • Stomach / surgery
  • Stomach Volvulus / complications
  • Stomach Volvulus / mortality
  • Stomach Volvulus / surgery
  • Stomach Volvulus / veterinary*
  • Vomiting / veterinary