Effect of age and surgical approach on perioperative wound complication following ovariohysterectomy in shelter-housed cats in Australia

04 Apr 2016

Objectives The aim of the study was to investigate the effects of age and/or surgical approach on perioperative wound complication following ovariohysterectomy (OHE). Methods A retrospective search of perioperative monitoring records from a shelter desexing program was conducted to identify cats that underwent OHE between 1 June 2010 and 31 December 2012 inclusive. A wound complication was defined as gross observation of inflammation or wound dehiscence at the surgical site in the 5 day postoperative period. Cases were grouped according to age (≤12 weeks or >12 weeks) and surgical approach (flank or midline). Stratified analyses were conducted to evaluate the association between surgical approach and wound complications, after adjusting for age. Mantel–Haenszel adjusted risk ratio, Cochran–Mantel–Haenszel test statistic and their 95% confidence intervals were presented. Results A total of 312 cases met the study criteria. The overall wound complication risk was low (6.09%) and was not related to age. A midline approach was associated with a 4.59-times increased risk of wound complication, compared with a flank approach in cats up to 12 weeks of age (P = 0.015) but not in older cats. Conclusions and relevance These findings support the practice of prepubertal desexing for cats.