The purposes of this study were to describe a modified surgical technique in which intraoperative extubation was performed to evaluate abduction of the arytenoid cartilage prior to tying the suture and to assess outcome and complication rates associated with this procedure. Medical records from 30 client-owned dogs with acquired idiopathic laryngeal paralysis were retrospectively reviewed. All clients were contacted by telephone to obtain follow-up information regarding their dog. Six of the 30 surgeries required additional dissection (primarily around the craniodorsal aspect of the cricoarytenoid joint) after the initial intraoperative laryngeal examination. The procedures in 29 of the 30 dogs were deemed a success by the owners. Three (10%) dogs developed postoperative aspiration pneumonia. One of these dogs required long-term antibiotic therapy. Twenty-nine dogs returned to normal activity, and none of the dogs had any exercise intolerance associated with respiratory difficulties. Three owners reported that their dogs were able to swim, and one dog hunted postoperatively. Results of this study suggest that intraoperative laryngeal examination may help limit postoperative complications by allowing for direct, intraoral visualization of the arytenoid cartilage. This enables a surgeon to modify the soft tissue dissection around the cricoarytenoid joint to ensure that adequate abduction is apparent.

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