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208 Breeds, 422 Health Conditions  |  Find a Vet

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Gastric Outflow Obstruction




Condition Overview

The pyloric canal is placed at the outlet of the stomach. Scarring and contraction of the pyloric canal prevents the stomach from emptying.


Gastric outflow obstruction can be partial or complete. Dogs with partial obstruction vomit intermittently, often 12 - 16 hours after eating. The vomitus usually contains undigested food, and occasionally, blood. When obstruction is complete, vomiting occurs immediately after eating and is often projectile.

Other signs of gastric outflow obstruction include loss of appetite, weight loss, bloating, and belching.


Stomach and duodenal ulcers close to the pyloric canal are the most common causes of inflammation and scarring. Other causes of scarring and contraction include hypertrophic and eosinophilic gastritis, and gastric tumors. Foreign bodies and bezoars are other causes of gastric outflow obstruction.


The diagnosis can sometimes be made by an X-ray of the abdomen or an ultrasound showing an enlarged, fluid filled stomach. Gastroscopy or an upper GI series may be required for more complete diagnosis.


The blockage must be surgically removed.


There is no known prevention for this condition.


Please contact your veterinarian if you suspect your pet may have this condition.

Show Sources & Contributors +


Dog Owners Home Veterinary Handbook

Publisher: Wiley Publishing, 2007

Website: http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/

Authors: Debra M. Eldredge, Liisa D. Carlson, Delbert G. Carlson, James M. Giffen MD

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