Idiopathic Canine Laryngeal Paralysis as One Sign of a Diffuse Polyneuropathy: An Observational Study of 90 Cases (2007–2013)

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Objective:To determine survival and incidence of complications in dogs with idiopathic laryngeal paralysis (ILP) and concurrent neurologic signs.Study Design:Observational study.Animals:Dogs (n = 90) with ILP.Methods:Medical records (January 2007–June 2013) of dogs with ILP were reviewed. Neurologic comorbidities, including pelvic limb neurologic abnormalities and esophageal abnormalities were identified. Using medical record information and client interviews, the relationship between these comorbidities and postoperative survival (primary outcome measure) and postoperative complications (secondary outcome measure) was identified.Results:Dogs that had surgical correction of ILP had a 2.6-fold reduction in the hazard of death throughout the study period (HR = 2.6; 95% CI: 1.34–4.84, P = .006). Owner assessed patient quality of life (10-point scale) increased by an average of 4.1 ± 1.4 units immediately postoperatively, and 4.9 ± 0.9 units until death or followup compared with preoperative values. Thirty-five of 72 dogs available for followup had evidence of diffuse neurologic comorbidities. Overall complication rate for dogs with neurologic comorbidities was 74%, compared with 32% for dogs without neurologic comorbidities. Presence of any neurologic comorbidity was associated with a significantly greater odds of any complication (OR = 4.04; 95% CI: 1.25–13.90, P = .019) as well as recurring complications (OR = 8.00; 95% CI: 1.49–54.38; P = .015).Conclusion:Surgical correction of ILP was positively associated with survival, and dogs with neurologic comorbidities were at greater risk for developing postoperative complications.

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