Clinical Sciences, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden
Gastric dilatation volvulus (GDV) is a life-threatening condition that carries high mortality rates despite modern treatment routines. Clinical indicators for predicting prognosis in individual dogs are warranted.
This is a retrospective study of clinical and laboratory data from 339 dogs diagnosed with GDV at the University Animal Hospital, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Uppsala, Sweden, from 2000 to 2014. Of the studied dogs, 135 (39.8%) died, either during treatment (7 dogs) or by euthanasia (128 dogs). Reasons for euthanasia were: recommendation by treating veterinarian based on presumed poor prognosis (21 dogs), old age (31 dogs), concurrent disease (8 dogs), economic reasons (8 dogs) and non-responsiveness or lack of improvement after initiated treatment (13 dogs). In 33 dogs no reason was noted, and in 14 dogs several reasons were described. In total, 41 dogs that died of GVD and 204 survivors were included in the mortality analysis. Fisher's exact or Chi-square tests were used to assess associations between indicator variables and mortality, with p < 0.05 used as indicating statistical significance.
When comparing survivors and non-survivors the following variables were associated with increased mortality: Severely depressed general condition, increased blood lactate levels, increased or decreased rectal temperature, and cardiac arrhythmia. Concentrations of hemoglobin, hematocrit, total white blood cell count, alanine aminotransferase and creatinine did not differ significantly between the groups.
Clinical and laboratory variables may be helpful as prognostic indicators in dogs with GDV.