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Other Systems

This is a Other Systems condition.

Persistent Mullerian Duct Syndrome, PMDS

What is PMDS?

A developmental syndrome of the Miniature and Standard Schnauzers, this causes male dogs to develop parts of the female reproductive tract, which understandably can cause significant complications later in life. Female dogs with PMDS have zero anatomic abnormalities. PMDS males are quite normal as far as their male external genitalia goes, though 50% will have one or two undescended testes (unilateral or bilateral cryptorchidism), which can affect fertility and increase risk for testicular tumors. PMDS dogs can also suffer from complications of their persistent uterus, including pyometra or hydrometra (pus or fluid-filled uterus) and endometritis (inflammation of the uterine lining); symptoms for these could range from abdominal swelling to abnormal behavior such as increased drinking to fever, vomiting, and collapse. The treatment for both of these sequelae is surgical removal of the uterus and undescended testicles (orchidohysterectomy); however, genetic testing and prophylactic removal of the offending organs is probably the best way to treat this condition.

What are the signs & symptoms that develop in affected dogs?

Male puppies have a 50% chance of being cryptorchid (one or two undescended testicles), which is recognized in puppies. Cryptorchid dogs are more likely to develop testicular tumors and have poor fertility. PMDS dogs can also suffer from complications of their persistent uterus, including pyometra or hydrometra (pus or fluid-filled uterus) and endometritis (inflammation of the uterine lining); symptoms for these could range from abdominal swelling to abnormal behavior such as increased drinking to fever, vomiting, and collapse.

When do signs and symptoms develop?

Dogs are born with this condition, but it is often not recognized until genetic testing or surgical sterilization is performed.

How do vets diagnose this condition?

Genetic testing, clinical signs, and abdominal ultrasound can all be used in diagnosing this disease.

How is this condition treated?

The treatment for both of these sequelae is surgical removal of the uterus and undescended testicles (orchidohysterectomy); however, genetic testing and prophylactic removal of the offending organs is probably the best way to treat this condition.

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