GDV / TORSION / BLOAT: Gastric Dilatation & Volvulus (GDV) has been, and continues to be, a common life threatening and often fatal condition of large and giant breed dogs. The most at risk breeds include: Great Dane, St. Bernard, Blood Hound, Weimeriner, Boxer, and German Shepard Dog. Studies report that the likelihood of a large or giant breed dog developing a GDV is approximately 25%. However, high risk dogs such as the Great Dane have approximately a 45% chance of developing a GDV. Once a GDV occurs, surgery is the treatment of choice but even with immediate, and successful surgery, mortality with GDV has been reported to be approximately 30%. Without surgery, GDV is 100% fatal. Prevention is a far better alternative.
LAPAROSCOPIC ASSISTED GASTROPEXY: This procedure is a minimally invasive means by which to permanently pexy (secure) the stomach to the abdominal wall in such a manner that future gastric volvulus or torsion is prevented. Minimally invasive surgical techniques allow the surgeon to perform major operations through minimal surgical incisions. Through the use of a 5 mm fiberoptic scope (1/4 inch scope) and a 1cm cm incision (1/2 inch) just behind the umbilicus (belly button), the surgeon is able to completely evaluate the abdomen and look for any abnormalities. Through a second 2 cm incision just behind the rib cage on the right side, the surgeon passes a small grasping instrument, and while watching on the monitor through the previously placed scope, locates and grasps a portion of the stomach. This section of the stomach is then sutured to the abdominal wall to achieve the pexy. The stomach is now permanently secured in place and cannot flip or twist in the future. Previously, this type of procedure required a major operation with a large and painful abdominal incision. Minimally invasive laparoscopy allows the surgeon to achieve the same outcome with only two very small, and minimally painful, incisions. The patient recovers faster, with minimal postoperative discomfort, and can often go home the same day as the procedure.