OBJECTIVE To assess the feasibility of esophageal insufflation CT (EICT) for evaluation of the esophagus in dogs.
ANIMALS 7 clinically normal adult Beagles.
PROCEDURES Each dog was anesthetized twice with 1 week between anesthesia sessions. Dogs were positioned in sternal recumbency during all CT scans. During the first anesthesia session, a CT scan was performed before the esophagus was insufflated (insufflation pressure, 0 mm Hg) and unenhanced and contrast-enhanced EICT scans were performed after CO2 was insufflated into the esophageal lumen to achieve a pressure of 5 mm Hg. For the contrast-enhanced scan, each dog received iohexol (600 mg/kg, IV), and the scan was performed 30 seconds later. During the second anesthesia session, unenhanced and contrast-enhanced EICT scans were performed in the same manner except the insufflation pressure achieved was 10 mm Hg. The esophageal luminal cross-sectional area and wall thickness were measured at each of 5 segments, and mean values were compared among the 3 insufflation pressures and between unenhanced and contrast-enhanced images.
RESULTS Mean esophageal luminal cross-sectional area increased and esophageal wall thickness decreased as insufflation pressure increased. Measurements did not differ significantly between unenhanced and contrast-enhanced images. The stomach became distended with CO2 at an insufflation pressure of 10 mm Hg but not at 5 mm Hg. No adverse effects were observed.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results suggested EICT was feasible for esophageal evaluation in dogs. Further research is necessary to determine the optimal insufflation pressure for the procedure and its diagnostic efficacy in diseased patients.