For the parents of fur-babies who have just received a diagnosis of laryngeal paralysis, investigating treatment options and planning for the future can be stressful. Many dogs who develop laryngeal paralysis do so later in life, and it can sometimes be accompanied by other neurological symptoms. Fortunately, there are a few treatment options that can help create an open airway for your canine. Read this primer on laryngeal paralysis in dogs and consult a board veterinary surgeon for treatment.
Symptoms of Laryngeal Paralysis in Dogs
Laryngeal paralysis is most common in large, older dogs, though younger canines and cats can develop the condition as well. With laryngeal paralysis, the larynx (also known as the voice box) does not function as it should. Rather than opening wide to allow air and closing to prevent the passage of food and water, the muscles that control the larynx become unresponsive. As a result, companions suffering from this condition may experience voice changes, coughing, gagging, and harsh breathing. Your companion’s breaths and barks may become more hoarse and they may experience exercise intolerance as a result.
Surgical and Non-Surgical Treatment
There are a few treatment options available for this condition, including surgical and non-surgical options. While things like anti-inflammatory medication and exercise restriction can help reduce laryngeal swelling, there are also a handful of surgical procedures designed to mitigate the effects of laryngeal paralysis. The tie-back procedure is one of the most common operations performed for canines with laryngeal paralysis. It involves suturing one side of the larynx so that half of it remains open, producing a usable airway. A partial arytenoidectomy is another option. Because of the likelihood of detrimental scar formation in the airway, this procedure is less common than the tie-back. During a partial arytenoidectomy, arytenoids (structures that can obstruct the airway) are surgically removed. In situations where a tie-back procedure would likely not be effective, a permanent tracheostomy may be considered.
The Importance of Selecting a Board Veterinary Surgeon
Treating laryngeal paralysis surgically can often produce the best outcomes, and a board veterinary surgeon can be an invaluable asset in determining your companion’s next steps. Board veterinary surgeons undergo rigorous training to ensure that they have the knowledge, skills, and experience necessary to perform life-saving operations. If you and your companion are coping with a diagnosis of laryngeal paralysis, contact a board veterinary surgeon to discuss your canine’s outlook.
Trust Maryland Veterinary Surgical Services With Your Companion’s Health
Your companion’s health is important, and the team at MVSS is ready to provide the best care possible for your furry family. We are dedicated to combining comprehensive exams and assessments with informative and honest discussions of your companion’s care. Once we have worked with you to decide on the best course of action for your dog, our professionals will use their surgical expertise to work towards the goal of giving your companion an active and pain-free life. We are proud to serve loyal companions in Catonsville and Baltimore. To learn more about our services, give us a call at 410-788-4088 or visit us online. For more information and tips for pet health, follow us on Facebook and Pinterest.