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Etiology and clinical outcome in dogs with aspiration pneumonia: 88 cases (2004–2006)

David A. KoganVeterinary Medical Teaching Hospitaland the Department of Veterinary Medicine and Epidemiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

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Lynelle R. JohnsonDepartment of Veterinary Medicine and Epidemiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

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Beverly K. SturgesDepartment of Surgical and Radiological Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

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Karl E. JandreyDepartment of Surgical and Radiological Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

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Rachel E. PollardDepartment of Surgical and Radiological Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

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Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the number and types of underlying disorders detected in dogs with aspiration pneumonia and determine the survival rate among affected dogs.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—88 dogs with aspiration pneumonia.

Procedures—Medical records were reviewed to identify disease processes that could result in aspiration pneumonia. To assess outcome (ie, survival to discharge from the hospital or nonsurvival), dogs were grouped by the type and number of underlying disease processes. Duration of hospitalization and radiographic severity of disease were evaluated with regard to case outcome.

Results—As the cause of aspiration pneumonia, a single underlying disorder was identified in 60 of the 88 dogs; 2 or more diseases were identified in the remaining dogs. Esophageal disease (n = 35), vomiting (34), neurologic disorders (24), laryngeal disease (16), and postanesthetic aspiration (12) were identified most commonly. Overall, 68 dogs survived to discharge from the hospital (survival rate, 77%). Survival rates were comparable among dogs regardless of the underlying cause of aspiration pneumonia. Radiographic severity of disease and duration of hospitalization did not influence survival.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Among these study dogs, aspiration pneumonia was associated with a high survival rate. The presence of more than 1 underlying disease associated with aspiration pneumonia did not adversely impact survival rate. Interestingly, radiographic severity of disease and duration of hospitalization were not associated with overall survival rate.

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the number and types of underlying disorders detected in dogs with aspiration pneumonia and determine the survival rate among affected dogs.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—88 dogs with aspiration pneumonia.

Procedures—Medical records were reviewed to identify disease processes that could result in aspiration pneumonia. To assess outcome (ie, survival to discharge from the hospital or nonsurvival), dogs were grouped by the type and number of underlying disease processes. Duration of hospitalization and radiographic severity of disease were evaluated with regard to case outcome.

Results—As the cause of aspiration pneumonia, a single underlying disorder was identified in 60 of the 88 dogs; 2 or more diseases were identified in the remaining dogs. Esophageal disease (n = 35), vomiting (34), neurologic disorders (24), laryngeal disease (16), and postanesthetic aspiration (12) were identified most commonly. Overall, 68 dogs survived to discharge from the hospital (survival rate, 77%). Survival rates were comparable among dogs regardless of the underlying cause of aspiration pneumonia. Radiographic severity of disease and duration of hospitalization did not influence survival.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Among these study dogs, aspiration pneumonia was associated with a high survival rate. The presence of more than 1 underlying disease associated with aspiration pneumonia did not adversely impact survival rate. Interestingly, radiographic severity of disease and duration of hospitalization were not associated with overall survival rate.

Contributor Notes

Dr. Kogan's present address is Veterinary Medical and Surgical Group, 2199 Sperry Ave, Ventura, CA 93003.

Supported in part by the S.T.A.R. (Students Training in Advanced Research) program, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, and the Bailey Wrigley Fund.

Address correspondence to Dr. Johnson.