Unilateral nephrectomy in dogs with renal disease: 30 cases (1985-1994)

Jody L. Gookin From the Department of Companion Animal and Special Species Medicine (Gookin, Stone) and the Department of Anatomy, Physiological Sciences, and Radiology (Spaulding, Berry), College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough St, Raleigh, NC 27606.

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Elizabeth Arnold Stone From the Department of Companion Animal and Special Species Medicine (Gookin, Stone) and the Department of Anatomy, Physiological Sciences, and Radiology (Spaulding, Berry), College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough St, Raleigh, NC 27606.

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Kathy A. Spaulding From the Department of Companion Animal and Special Species Medicine (Gookin, Stone) and the Department of Anatomy, Physiological Sciences, and Radiology (Spaulding, Berry), College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough St, Raleigh, NC 27606.

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Clifford R. Berry From the Department of Companion Animal and Special Species Medicine (Gookin, Stone) and the Department of Anatomy, Physiological Sciences, and Radiology (Spaulding, Berry), College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough St, Raleigh, NC 27606.

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Objective

To evaluate indications for and complications, efficacy, and effects on renal function of unilateral nephrectomy in dogs with renal disease, and to evaluate the role that scintigraphy had in the decision to excise a kidney.

Design

Retrospective case series.

Animals

30 dogs with renal disease that underwent unilateral nephrectomy. A comparison group of 12 dogs with renal calculi that underwent renal scintigraphy but not nephrectomy was included.

Results

Indications for nephrectomy included renal or ureteral calculi (n = 10), renal mass (8), chronic pyelonephritis (5), perirenal mass (3), severe hydronephrosis and hydroureter (3), and renal hypoplasia with ureteral ectopia (1). None of the dogs were azotemic before surgery. Renal scintigraphy apparently influenced the decision to perform nephrectomy, because in 14 of 16 dogs that underwent nephrectomy, the affected kidney contributed ≤ 33% of the total glomerular filtration rate, but in 6 of 8 comparison dogs that underwent nephrotomy, the affected kidney contributed > 33% of total glomerular filtration rate. Complications of nephrectomy included oliguria (5) and organ laceration (2). Mean ± SD final serum creatinine concentration for 16 dogs alive at least 6 months after nephrectomy was 2.2 ± 1.8 mg/dl. Three dogs had chronic renal failure of undetermined cause at the time of death. Nephrectomy did not completely resolve the underlying disease in 13 dogs. Renal function was evaluated in 6 dogs 2 to 3.5 years after nephrectomy and was impaired in 4. None of the dogs were anemic, azotemic, proteinuric, or hypertensive. Survival time varied depending on the underlying disease.

Clinical Implications

Multiple factors contributed to the decision to perform nephrectomy. Unilateral nephrectomy resulted in few serious complications and was not detrimental to the remaining kidney, but did not always resolve the underlying disease. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1996;208:2020-2026)

Objective

To evaluate indications for and complications, efficacy, and effects on renal function of unilateral nephrectomy in dogs with renal disease, and to evaluate the role that scintigraphy had in the decision to excise a kidney.

Design

Retrospective case series.

Animals

30 dogs with renal disease that underwent unilateral nephrectomy. A comparison group of 12 dogs with renal calculi that underwent renal scintigraphy but not nephrectomy was included.

Results

Indications for nephrectomy included renal or ureteral calculi (n = 10), renal mass (8), chronic pyelonephritis (5), perirenal mass (3), severe hydronephrosis and hydroureter (3), and renal hypoplasia with ureteral ectopia (1). None of the dogs were azotemic before surgery. Renal scintigraphy apparently influenced the decision to perform nephrectomy, because in 14 of 16 dogs that underwent nephrectomy, the affected kidney contributed ≤ 33% of the total glomerular filtration rate, but in 6 of 8 comparison dogs that underwent nephrotomy, the affected kidney contributed > 33% of total glomerular filtration rate. Complications of nephrectomy included oliguria (5) and organ laceration (2). Mean ± SD final serum creatinine concentration for 16 dogs alive at least 6 months after nephrectomy was 2.2 ± 1.8 mg/dl. Three dogs had chronic renal failure of undetermined cause at the time of death. Nephrectomy did not completely resolve the underlying disease in 13 dogs. Renal function was evaluated in 6 dogs 2 to 3.5 years after nephrectomy and was impaired in 4. None of the dogs were anemic, azotemic, proteinuric, or hypertensive. Survival time varied depending on the underlying disease.

Clinical Implications

Multiple factors contributed to the decision to perform nephrectomy. Unilateral nephrectomy resulted in few serious complications and was not detrimental to the remaining kidney, but did not always resolve the underlying disease. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1996;208:2020-2026)

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