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Vet Radiol Ultrasound. 1999 May-Jun;40(3):251-8.

Use of magnetic resonance angiography for diagnosis of portosystemic shunts in dogs.

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  • 1Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Washington State University, Pullman 99164-7060, USA.


A prospective study was conducted to determine the sensitivity and specificity of diagnosis of portosystemic shunts (PSS) and the accuracy of anatomically locating single congenital PSS in dogs using magnetic resonance angiography (MRA). MRA was performed on 10 normal dogs and 23 dogs with PSS. Sensitivity and specificity of MRA to diagnose any shunt among all dogs were 80% and 100%, respectively. Among dogs identified with PSS, sensitivity and specificity of MRA for diagnosis of multiple extrahepatic shunts were 63% and 97%, respectively, and for diagnosis of single congenital shunts were 79% and 100%, respectively. Using MRA, radiologists correctly identified shunts as extrahepatic or intrahepatic in 83% of patients and correctly identified the origin and insertion of the shunts in 57% and 97% of patients, respectively. Use of MRA is specific for diagnosis of PSS and is a sensitive indicator of anatomic location of single congenital portosystemic shunts.

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