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D2003-3

Dear Daisy Dog

My 8-year-old Great Dane’s stomach suddenly bloated and twisted. We immediately took him to the veterinarian who performed surgery to deflate and reposition the stomach, but Jeremy died two days later. Did the vet do something wrong?

Daisy Responds

Our condolences on the death of Jeremy. Unfortunately, death is not at all uncommon after bloat surgery, even in the best animal hospitals.

The stomach bloats and twists in a condition known as gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV), most common in large, deep-chested dogs.

GDV causes such severe metabolic stress that cardiac arrhythmias begin a day or two after surgery in almost half the patients who survive surgery. These irregular heartbeats are a common cause of death up to four days after surgery.

Another cause of death after GDV surgery is a hole in the stomach caused by death of part of the stomach wall when the blood supply was cut off during the twist.

I hope it helps to know that you did everything possible for Jeremy by getting him to the veterinarian immediately.

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