Intercostal approach for right adrenalectomy in dogs.
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OBJECTIVE: To describe an intercostal (IC) approach to the right adrenal (RA) gland in dogs. STUDY DESIGN: Cadaveric study and case series. ANIMALS: Dogs with right adrenal (RA) tumors (n=11) and normal canine cadavers (6). METHODS: Cadavers had an IC (n=3) or paracostal (3) approach to the RA. The relative spatial position of the RA to the incision was evaluated. Medical records (June 2007-December 2012) of dogs that had an IC approach to the RA were reviewed. Perioperative data were recorded and described. RESULTS: In cadavers, the RA was closer to the cranial aspect of the surgical incision after an IC approach compared with a paracostal approach. The IC approach for right adrenalectomy was successfully performed in 11 dogs (6 adrenocortical carcinomas, 4 pheochromocytomas, and 1 osteosarcoma) with a mean anesthesia duration of 242minutes and mean surgical of 144minutes. Dogs had vascular invasion into the phrenicoabdominal vein (n=11) and caudal vena cava (6). There were no significant intra- or postoperative complications. One dog was euthanatized intraoperatively. Median survival time for all dogs was 786 days. CONCLUSIONS: The IC approach for right adrenalectomy offers superior exposure of the RA compared with a paracostal approach.