Retrospective Study

Does laparoscopic ovariectomy in dogs prevent the development of uterine pathologies at a later age?

  • J. Wellens
  • B. Van Goethem
  • H. de Rooster


Ovariectomy and laparoscopic ovariectomy (lap OVE) are the routine spaying procedures in many countries. With these procedures, the uterus remains in situ and later in life, a uterine pathology such as cystic endometrial hyperplasia, pyometra or uterine neoplasia, can potentially develop. The patient files of 308 clinically healthy dogs that underwent elective lap OVE, were retrospectively searched during a study period of twelve years. For 173 dogs (56%), the owners could be contacted for a telephone survey. The median age at the time of lap OVE was 1.2 years (range: 0.4-12.3 years) and median body weight was 17.0 kg (range: 2.0-65.0 kg). At a median follow-up period of 4.5 years (range: 0.2-12.3 years), in none of the dogs, any clinical signs developed related to a uterine pathology. In 14/173 dogs (median age 8.0 years (range: 2.1-11.5 years); median body weight 24.4 kg (range: 2.0-65.0 kg)), early-stage uterine changes (uterine cysts, cystic endometrial hyperplasia, and/or uterine luminal collections) were visible at the time of lap OVE. Two of these fourteen dogs underwent an abdominal ultrasound, at respectively 1.3 and 3.5 years after lap OVE, that identified regression of previous pathologies to a normal uterus. In none of the remaining twelve dogs, any sign of a uterine pathology developed at a median follow-up of 3.9 years (range: 1.1-11.1 years). In this study, it was found that advanced age and even the presence of early-stage hormonally dependent uterine changes should not be considered contraindications to perform lap OVE in clinically healthy dogs.

How to Cite:

Wellens, J. & Van Goethem, B. & de Rooster, H., (2023) “Does laparoscopic ovariectomy in dogs prevent the development of uterine pathologies at a later age?”, Vlaams Diergeneeskundig Tijdschrift 92(4), 171–176. doi:

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Published on
28 Aug 2023
Peer Reviewed