Gurgaon : A difficult surgery, on a St Bernard well past it’s prime suffering from a condition with a high fatality rate. How 10-year-old Rosco survived is indeed a miracle.
It all happened suddenly. Rosco was playing with her owner after dinner on June 3, when he became restless, with his stomach inflating alarmingly. “We could see the stomach getting bigger and then Rosco vomited. The family vet couldn’t be reached, so we rushed him to CGS Hospital in DLF Phase 3. The doctor told us Rosco doesn’t have a high chance of survival, as he has Gastric Dilation Volvulus (GDV), commonly known as stomach twisting. Doctors said a surgery was needed, but survival rate is only about 10%. We chose surgery,” said Rosco’s relieved owner Reena Sethi, who lives in Malibu Towne, Sector 48.
According to doctors, GDV is a condition in which the stomach and spleen of the affected animal gets twisted, cutting off blood supply to all essential body parts and leading to rupture of major blood vessels, multiple organ failure and a quick but painful death.
“Generally, large and deep-chested breeds such as St Bernards and German Shephards show a higher proclivity for this disease, especially from physical exertion immediately after a meal. The stomach gets distended from gas. If not treated quickly, survival rate is very low. With symptoms of frothing, inability to vomit/stand/urinate and asphyxiation, the condition needs to be reported within 1-2 hours to experts,” said Dr Samar Mahendran, one of the doctors who operated Rosco.
Dr Shally Mattoo Jalali, a city-based vet, said, “It’s a rare surgery as the condition is limited only to deep-chested breeds. Most often, by the time owners identify the disease, the animal is dead. Timely treatment is key to the surgery’s success.”
The dog was discharged in four days, though he’s still recovering at home. “We’re following doctor’s instructions. We’ve put him on a diet of dalia with chicken and vegetables. It feels so good to see him back. He is like my child,” said Sethi.
A team of four doctors — Samar Mahendran, Vaibhav Bhishnoi, Ramesh Jha and Vikas Chauhan conducted the two-hour-long surgery. As per the owner, the entire treatment, including surgery, cost Rs 80,000.