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  • Author or Editor: Etienne Côté x
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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To assess the frequency of heart murmurs in overtly healthy cats.

Design—Prospective study.

Sample Population—103 healthy domestic cats.

Procedure—Background information and physical characteristics were assessed in cats that were candidates for blood donation during an 8-month period. For cats with heart murmurs, additional information collected included murmur timing, grade, point of maximal intensity, and presence of additional heart sounds.

Results—Heart murmurs were detected in 22 of the 103 (21%) cats. Echocardiography was performed in 7 of those 22 cats. The echocardiogram was considered normal in 1 cat; in the other 6 cats, diagnoses included hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (interventricular septal hypertrophic form [IVSH]; n = 4), left ventricular concentric hypertrophy with valvular disease (1), and equivocal IVSH (1). Thirteen cats had more than 1 examination during the study; 3 of them developed heart murmurs. There were no significant differences in age, sex, breed, coat color, eye color, or heart rate between cats with and without murmurs. Among the 103 cats, there were 6 pairs of siblings from 6 multiple- cat households and 16 cats from 7 multiple-cat households in which the cats were not related; the proportion of cats with murmurs was higher in the related cats (5/12) than in the unrelated cats (3/16), but the difference was not significant.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results indicated that heart murmurs are detectable in a large proportion of overtly healthy cats and that many murmurs appear to be caused by structural heart disease that is in a clinically latent state. ( J Am Vet Med Assoc 2004;225:384–388)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To compare potassium concentrations in feline plasma and serum samples analyzed promptly after collection or after 20 to 28 hours of refrigerated storage.

ANIMALS

41 cats.

PROCEDURES

A venous blood sample was obtained from each cat. Aliquots were placed in 2 tubes without anticoagulant (blood was allowed to clot to derive serum) and 2 tubes with heparin (to derive plasma). One serum and 1 plasma sample were kept at room temperature and analyzed within 60 minutes after collection (baseline); the other serum and plasma samples were analyzed after 20 to 28 hours of refrigerated storage. At both time points, serum and plasma potassium concentrations were measured.

RESULTS

Median baseline serum potassium concentration (4.3 mmol/L) was significantly higher than median baseline plasma potassium concentration (4.1 mmol/L). The median difference between those values was 0.4 mmol/L (95% CI, 0.2 to 0.5 mmol/L). Compared with their respective baseline measurements, the median serum plasma concentration (4.8 mmol/L) and median plasma potassium concentration (4.6 mmol/L) were higher after 20 to 28 hours of refrigeration.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Results indicated that with regard to potassium concentration in feline blood samples, clotting or refrigerated storage for 20 to 28 hours results in a significant artifactual increase. Detection of an unexpectedly high potassium concentration in a cat may represent pseudohyperkalemia, especially if the blood sample was placed in a no-additive tube, was stored for 20 to 28 hours prior to analysis, or both.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To investigate the effects of dexmedetomidine (DXM) and its subsequent reversal with atipamezole (APM) on the echocardiogram and circulating concentrations of cardiac biomarkers in cats.

ANIMALS

14 healthy cats.

PROCEDURES

Cats underwent echocardiography and measurements of circulating cTn-I and NT-proBNP concentrations before (PRE) and during (INTRA) DXM sedation (40 µg/kg IM) and 2 to 4 (2H POST) and 24 (24H POST) hours after reversal with APM.

RESULTS

Administering DXM significantly decreased heart rate, right ventricular and left ventricular (LV) outflow tract velocities, and M-mode–derived LV free-wall thickness; increased LV end systolic diameter and volume; and caused valvar regurgitation. While sedative effects resolved within 25 minutes of APM reversal, the evolution of echocardiographic changes was mixed: LV ejection fraction and mitral valvar regurgitation score were different at 2H POST than at both INTRA and PRE (partial return toward baseline), LV end-diastolic volume was different PRE to INTRA and INTRA to 2H POST but not different PRE to 2H POST (full return toward baseline), and M-mode–derived LV free-wall thickness was significantly different from PRE to INTRA and PRE to 2H POST (no return toward baseline). Serum cTn-I and plasma NT-proBNP concentrations increased significantly with DXM, which remained significant 2H POST.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Administration of DXM and APM reversal produced changes in echocardiographic results and in circulating cTn-I and NT-proBNP concentrations. Understanding these changes could help veterinarians differentiate drug effects from cardiac disease.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine signalment, clinical signs, diagnostic findings, treatment, and outcome for cats with atrial fibrillation (AF).

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—50 cats.

Procedure—Medical records of cats that met criteria for a diagnosis of AF (ECG consisting of at least 2 leads, clear absence of P waves, supraventricular rhythm, and convincingly irregularly irregular rhythm) and had undergone echocardiography were reviewed.

Results—There were 41 males (37 castrated) and 9 females (7 spayed). Forty-one were of mixed breeding; 9 were purebred. Mean ± SD age was 10.2 ± 3.7 years. The most common chief complaints were dyspnea, aortic thromboembolism, and lethargy. In 11 cats, AF was an incidental finding. Mean ± SD ventricular rate was 223 ± 36 beats/min. The most common echocardiographic abnormalities were restrictive or unclassified cardiomyopathy (n = 19), concentric left ventricular hypertrophy (18), and dilated cardiomyopathy (6). Mean ± SD left atrial-to-aortic diameter ratio (n = 39) was 2.55 ± 0.80. The most common thoracic radiographic findings were cardiomegaly, pleural effusion, and pulmonary edema. Median survival time (n = 24) was 165 days (range, 0 to 1,095 days). Eight of 24 cats lived for ≥ 1 year after a diagnosis of AF was made.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that AF occurs primarily in older adult male cats with structural heart disease severe enough to lead to atrial enlargement. Atrial fibrillation in these cats was most commonly first detected when signs of decompensated cardiac disease were evident, but also was commonly identified as an incidental finding. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2004;225:256–260)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association