Gastropexy is a procedure in which the stomach is secured to the body wall. Several different types of gastropexy are commonly performed, via both large surgical incisions (laparotomy) and minimally invasive (laparoscopic) techniques.
Gastropexy may be performed in healthy dogs to help prevent the occurrence of gastric dilatation and volvulus (GDV); a condition in which the stomach distends with gas and rotates in the abdomen.
During emergency surgery for dogs that experience GDV, gastropexy is performed after de-rotation of the stomach to prevent recurrence of the condition.
Gastropexy is highly effective for prevention of GDV and generally well tolerated. Prophylactic procedures may be performed in at-risk breeds- generally large, deep-chested dogs- to avoid development of GDV, which can be a life-threatening condition.
Gastropexy prevents rotation or torsion of the stomach, but is not effective at preventing bloat, or dilation of the stomach, which may still require veterinary attention.