CASE DESCRIPTION A 10-year-old spayed female Rottweiler was referred for evaluation because of a 2-month history of regurgitation and weight loss, despite no apparent change in appetite. The dog had received antiemetic and antacid treatment, without improvement.
CLINICAL FINDINGS Physical examination revealed a low body condition score (2/5), but other findings were unremarkable. Diffuse, global esophageal dilatation was noted on plain thoracic radiographs, and normal motility was confirmed through videofluoroscopic evaluation of swallowing. Transhepatic ultrasonographic and CT examination revealed a circumferential, intraparietal lesion in the distal portion of the esophagus causing distal esophageal or cardial subobstruction and no metastases. Incisional biopsy of the lesion was performed, and findings of histologic examination supported a diagnosis of esophageal leiomyoma.
TREATMENT AND OUTCOME In view of numerous possible complications associated with esophageal surgery, the decision was made to palliatively treat the dog by transcardial placement of a self-expanding, covered, nitinol esophageal stent under endoscopic guidance. Two weeks after stent placement, radiography revealed complete migration of the stent into the gastric lumen. Gastrotomy was performed, and the stent was replaced and fixed in place. Twenty-four months after initial stent placement, the dog had a healthy body condition and remained free of previous clinical signs.
CLINICAL RELEVANCE Diffuse benign muscular neoplasia should be considered as a differential diagnosis for acquired esophageal dilatation in adult and elderly dogs. In the dog of this report, transcardial stent placement resulted in resolution of the clinical signs, with no apparent adverse effect on digestive function. The described procedure could be beneficial for nonsurgical treatment of benign esophageal tumors in dogs.