For breeds or individuals at risk of developing GDV, a veterinarian may recommend a preventive gastropexy. Gastropexy is a procedure in which a portion of the stomach is sutured to the abdominal wall, to prevent it from twisting. The surgery can be performed at the same time as spay/neuter and can be conducted laparoscopically (which utilizes a tiny camera and leaves smaller incisions) to minimize associated risks.
The procedure prevents nearly 100% of GDV’s from occurring; however, a few pets do still develop GDV later in life, for a variety of reasons.
What is gastric dilatation-volvulus?
Gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) is the distension (dilatation) and twisting (volvulus) of the stomach. It is also commonly referred to as gastric torsion or bloat.
This disease progresses rapidly and is life-threatening.
GDV begins when a dog’s stomach fills with excessive amounts of gas, food, and fluid and then twists, closing off its entry and exit points.
After the torsion (volvulus) has occurred, the stomach may continue to grow in size as specific physiologic mechanisms allow even more gas and fluid to accumulate. The subsequent increase in pressure and size of the stomach can have cascading and potentially fatal consequences, including:
There are many proposed cause(s) of GDV, but we do not fully understand every possible cause.
Some causes relate to anatomical features that make it more difficult for gas to escape the stomach or features that allow the stomach to move more freely than it usually would. For example, dogs with large, deep chest cavities are more likely to develop GDV.
Dogs who are naturally nervous or fearful are also at increased risk.
What are the signs of gastric dilatation-volvulus?
The typical signs of gastric dilatation-volvulus include:
The most common predisposing factor is a deep chest.
Older dogs, underweight dogs, large-breed dogs, deep-chested dogs, and dogs with a family history of the disease are at highest risk for GDV.
GDV or Bloat, is a life threatening emergency. If you see any of the signs above, seek medical care immediately. Time is of the essence. Help prevent GDV from occurring with a gastropexy procedure for your pet. We are happy to answer any questions you may have (210) 651 - 0100.
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(210) 651 - 0100
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