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Author Topic: Twisted Stomach/Bloat  (Read 6233 times)
Butterbean
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« on: June 13, 2007, 05:55:22 AM »

My friend told me about a condition she referred to as "twisted stomach" that she said can occur in dogs.  She said if they eat before they excercise their stomach can "twist" and kill them.  I looked up the condition and found this:





BLOAT: THE MOTHER OF ALL EMERGENCIES
(from marvistavet.com)

There are many injuries and physical disorders which represent life-threatening emergencies. There is only one condition so drastic that it over shadows them all in terms of rapidity of consequences and effort in emergency treatment. This is the gastric dilatation and volvulus - the"bloat."

WHAT IS IT AND WHY IS IT SO SERIOUS?

The normal stomach sits high in the abdomen and contains a small amount of gas, some mucus, and any food being digested.  It undergoes a normal rhythm of contraction, receiving food from the esophagus above, grinding the food, and meting the ground food out to the small intestine at its other end.  Normally this proceeds uneventfully except for the occasional burp.

In the bloated stomach, gas and/or food stretches the stomach many times its normal size, causing tremendous abdominal pain. For reasons we do not fully understand, this grossly distended stomach has a tendency to rotate, thus twisting off not only its own blood supply but the only exit routes for the gas inside.  Not only is this condition extremely painful but it is also rapidly life-threatening. A dog with a bloated, twisted stomach (more scientifically called "Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus") will die in pain in a matter of hours unless drastic steps are taken.

WHAT ARE THE RISK FACTORS FOR DEVELOPING BLOAT?

Classically, this condition affects dog breeds which are said to be "deep chested," meaning the length of their chest from backbone to sternum is relatively long while the chest width from right to left is narrow.  Examples of deep chested breeds would be the Great Dane, Greyhound, and the setter breeds.  Still, any dog can bloat, even dachshunds and chihuahuas.

Dogs weighing more than 99 pounds
have an approximate 20% risk of bloat


Classically also, the dog had eaten a large meal and exercised heavily shortly thereafter. Still, we usually do not know why a given dog bloats on an individual basis. No specific diet or dietary ingredient has been proven to be associated with bloat. Some factors found to increase and decrease the risk of bloat are listed below:

Factors Increasing the Risk of Bloating
Feeding only one meal a day
 
Having closely related family members with a history of bloat

Eating rapidly
 
Being thin or underweight
 
Fearful or anxious temperment
 
History of aggression towards people or other dogs
 
Male dogs are more likely to bloat than females
 
Older dogs (7 - 12 years) were the highest risk group

 
Factors Decreasing the Risk of Bloat
Inclusion of canned dog food in the diet
 
Inclusion of table scraps in the diet
 
Happy or easy-going temperment
 
Eating 2 or more meals per day

In a study done by the Perdue University Research Group, headed by
Dr. Lawrence T. Glickman:

The Great Dane was the number one breed at risk for bloat

The St. Bernard was the #2 breed at risk for bloat

The Weimaraner was the #3 breed at risk for bloat

HOW TO TELL IF YOUR DOG HAS BLOATED

The dog may have an obviously distended stomach especially near the ribs but this is not always evident depending on the dog's body configuration.

The biggest clue is the vomiting:  the pet appears highly nauseated and is retching but little is coming up.

If this is seen, rush your dog to the veterinarian IMMEDIATELY.

WHAT HAS TO BE DONE

There are several steps to saving a bloated dogs life. Part of the problem is that all steps should be done at the same time and as quickly as possible.

FIRST: THE STOMACH MUST BE DECOMPRESSED

The huge stomach is by now pressing on the major blood vessels carrying blood back to the heart.  This stops normal circulation and sends the dog into shock. Making matters worse, the stomach tissue is dying because it is stretched too tightly to allow blood circulation through it.  There can be no recovery until the stomach is untwisted and the gas released.  A stomach tube and stomach pump are generally used for this

used for this but sometime surgery is needed to achieve stomach decompression.

ALSO FIRST:  RAPID IV FLUIDS MUST BE GIVEN TO REVERSE THE SHOCK

Intravenous catheters are placed and life-giving fluid solutions are rushed in to replace the blood that cannot get past the bloated stomach to return to the heart. The intense pain associated with this disease causes the heart rate to race at such a high rate that heart failure will result. medication to resolve the pain is needed if the patient’s heart rate is to slow down. Medication for shock, antibiotics and electrolytes are all vital in stabilizing the patient.

ALSO FIRST:  THE HEART RHYTHM IS ASSESSED AND STABILIZED


There is a special very dangerous rhythm problem, called a "premature ventricular


There is a special very dangerous rhythm problem, called a "premature ventricular contraction" or "pvc," associated with bloat and it must be ruled out. If it is present, intravenous medications are needed to stabilize the rhythm.  Since this rhythm problem may not be evident until even the next day continual EKG monitoring may be necessary. Disturbed heart rhythm already present at the beginning of treatment is associated with a 38% mortality rate.

Getting the bloated dog's stomach decompressed and reversing the shock is an adventure in itself but the work is not yet half finished.

SURGERY

All bloated dogs, once stable, should have surgery.  Without surgery, the damage done inside cannot be assessed or repaired plus bloat may recur at any point, even within the next few hours and the above adventure must be repeated. Surgery, called gastrpexy, allows the stomach to be tacked into normal position so that it may never again twist. Without gastropexy, the recurrence rate of bloat may be as high as 75%!

Assessment of the internal damage is also very important to recovery.  If there is a section of dying tissue on the stomach wall, this must be discovered and removed or the dog will die despite the heroics described above. Also, the spleen, which is located adjacent to the stomach may twist with the stomach.  The spleen may require removal, too.

If the tissue damage is so bad that part of the stomach must be removed, the mortality rate jumps to 28 - 38%.

If the tissue damage is so bad that the spleen must be removed, the mortality rate is 32 - 38%.

After the expense and effort of the stomach decompression, it is tempting to forgo the further expense of surgery.  However, consider that the next time your dog bloats, you may not be there to catch it in time and, according the study described below, without surgery there is a 24% mortality rate and a 76% chance of re-bloating at some point.


 
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« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2007, 07:07:47 AM »

I deleted my post because it was the Great Dane Vaccinosis Study by Glickman that had the controversy. 

 http://www.vet.purdue.edu/epi/great_dane_vaccinosis_fullreport_jan04.pdf

 
  Addie had her stomach tacked when she had the couch removed.   Roll Eyes While this won't prevent her from bloating, it may prevent torsioning if she ever does bloat.

   Incidence of bloat appears to be less in raw fed dogs, no grains being the reasoning.  Also in non or minimally vaccinated dogs.  But neither has been conclusively proven, it is anecdotal evidence.  The majority of raw feeders also don't vaccinate (most people start researching one area and end up going down both paths  Wink), so whether it is the diet, or vaccines or both is not known.

 
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knny187
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« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2007, 09:05:15 AM »

Yeah...I'm very cautious with the dog before & after he eats.


Basically...he still wants to go go go...but if I ignore him....he does calm down.
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« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2007, 09:47:08 AM »

Simethicone (Gas-X, Phazyme) can be given at the first signs of bloat.  This does not take the place of a trip to an emergency vet.

http://www.ginnie.com/gdv.htm


"If my dog is experiencing early symptoms of bloat, what should I do?

Many people, myself included, always keep a ready supply of the antacid Simethicone nearby, usually in the form of Phayzme® or Gas X®. (Among my contacts, Phazyme seems to be preferred; that's what I use.) Simethicone is considered quite safe, even when administered in large doses. Its purpose is to break up large gas bubbles in the stomach, enabling the accumulating gas to be more easily passed.

At the first hint of a gassy stomach, you can give a generous dose of Simethicone. If you are using Ultra Strength Phazyme® 180 mg softgels, slit open 5-10 capsules and squeeze the liquid directly into your dog's mouth. Some people report they get faster/better results using Phazyme® Quick Dissolve 125 mg chewable tablets. With either product, one dose of Simethicone may be sufficient to relieve pressure and settle the stomach before the condition gets any worse. More Simethicone can be given later, if needed."
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« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2007, 11:46:57 AM »

This was actually the cause of Keesha's death  Cry

She started to exhibit symptoms around 9:30 at night.  Not knowing what was going on, after about 45 minutes we took her to the emergency clinic.  During the long ride, it seemed she was not in as much distress, but in hindsight, she had gone into shock.  Immediately, they suspected what was going on.  My biggest concern at that point was to get her out of pain, which they did by running a morphine drip (or some sort of doggie pain reliever).  Then they performed an x-ray to confirm.  Meanwhile, I was desperately trying to contact her vet who had known her for 19 years to no avail.  I just NEEDED to know we were about to do the right thing.  As I type this, tears are streaming down my face.  Believing she was out of pain, we spent some time alone with her before having them administer "the shot" through her IV.  It was very quick and I hope peaceful for her.  The next day, her vet performed an ecropsy (various reasons) and confirmed we made the right decision.
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« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2007, 12:19:50 PM »

Damn Princess L, sorry to hear that story Sad

Thanks for all the information Flower.

Are Gas-X and Phayzme "people" drugs you can buy at any drugstore?  If so, I'm going to keep some on hand.
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« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2007, 12:20:00 PM »

This was actually the cause of Keesha's death  Cry

She started to exhibit symptoms around 9:30 at night.  Not knowing what was going on, after about 45 minutes we took her to the emergency clinic.  During the long ride, it seemed she was not in as much distress, but in hindsight, she had gone into shock.  Immediately, they suspected what was going on.  My biggest concern at that point was to get her out of pain, which they did by running a morphine drip (or some sort of doggie pain reliever).  Then they performed an x-ray to confirm.  Meanwhile, I was desperately trying to contact her vet who had known her for 19 years to no avail.  I just NEEDED to know we were about to do the right thing.  As I type this, tears are streaming down my face.  Believing she was out of pain, we spent some time alone with her before having them administer "the shot" through her IV.  It was very quick and I hope peaceful for her.  The next day, her vet performed an ecropsy (various reasons) and confirmed we made the right decision.



I'm sorry Princess L

Who's Keesha?

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« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2007, 12:24:55 PM »

So sorry Princess L.   Cry     


 Yes, STella both Phazyme and Gas-X are sold in grocery stores.  You could also probably order liquid Simethicone from your pharmacy too (would be more expensive, but easier to give in an emergency instead of opening up pills)


 That info I quoted was based on a great dane, the amount to give, I will see if I can find a size chart. 
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« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2007, 12:47:38 PM »



Simethicone is also in Mylanta I believe, ask the pharmacist or read the labels in the "gas" section of the store.  I think childrens Gas-X might be a liquid with a dropper too, one of them is.


I actually have this printed out and at home. I would never recommend tubing your dog unless there was no way to get to a vets in time. It also shows how to perform a trocharization, something else I would only do as a last resort to save the dogs life. If there is time, don't waste in on  trying these things yourself instead of getting to the vets (except for giving the simethicone)



  http://www.hmgdc.org/Bloat_Info.html


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Princess L
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« Reply #9 on: June 13, 2007, 01:56:58 PM »



I'm sorry Princess L

Who's Keesha?


She was our little sweetie for 19 years


* Keesha1.JPG (58.2 KB, 931x546 - viewed 141 times.)
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knny187
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« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2007, 02:08:21 PM »


She was our little sweetie for 19 years


19 YEARS!!! ?

wow Princess.....you obviously provided a very happy home & a very loooong life for you furry friend
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« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2007, 04:56:17 PM »



Simethicone is also in Mylanta I believe, ask the pharmacist or read the labels in the "gas" section of the store.  I think childrens Gas-X might be a liquid with a dropper too, one of them is.


I actually have this printed out and at home. I would never recommend tubing your dog unless there was no way to get to a vets in time. It also shows how to perform a trocharization, something else I would only do as a last resort to save the dogs life. If there is time, don't waste in on  trying these things yourself instead of getting to the vets (except for giving the simethicone)



  http://www.hmgdc.org/Bloat_Info.html




Simethicone is available as childrens Gas-X.   It may or may not do anything.    The best thing to do is error on the side of caution and get your dog to the veterinarians office so it can be treated.   GDV's are a very, very serious medical condition.   Rapid, aggressive medical therapy is the only way to treat this problem and have a chance of your pet living. 
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« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2007, 06:34:18 PM »


  Wow, we actually agree on something.     Roll Eyes
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« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2007, 06:36:25 PM »

  Wow, we actually agree on something.     Roll Eyes

isn't that nice.
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« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2007, 08:05:26 PM »

isn't that nice.
LOL.   Smell the power of the flower.....     Roll Eyes
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