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Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the effect of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) on activity of the reninangiotensin- aldosterone system (RAAS), the N-terminal fragment of proatrial natriuretic peptide (NTproANP), and thyroid hormone concentrations in dogs.

Animals—15 dogs with clinical signs of DCM, 15 dogs without clinical signs of DCM, and 15 age-, breed-, and sex-matched control dogs.

Procedure—Physical examinations, thoracic radiography, ECG, and echocardiography were performed on all dogs, and blood and urine samples were collected.

Results—Plasma renin activity (PRA), plasma aldosterone concentration (PAC), urine aldosterone-to-creatinine ratio, and NT-proANP concentrations were significantly increased in dogs with clinical signs of DCM, compared with dogs without clinical signs and control dogs. Thyroid-stimulating hormone and total thyroxine concentrations did not differ significantly among groups; however, free thyroxine (FT4) concentrations were significantly decreased in dogs with clinical signs of DCM, compared with control dogs and DCM-dogs without clinical signs. Concentrations of PRA, PAC, FT4, and urine aldosterone-to-creatinine ratio were significantly correlated, whereas plasma concentrations of NT-proANP only correlated with FT4 concentration.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—In dogs with clinical signs of DCM, increased concentrations of components of the RAAS were associated with increased concentrations of NT-proANP. Analysis of the neurohormonal system may aid in identification of clinical stages of DCM for groups of dogs, but the range is too great and there are too many dogs that have neurohormonal concentrations within reference ranges to assess dogs on an individual basis. ( Am J Vet Res 2001;62:961–967)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objectives—To determine whether attenuated wavy fibers may be found in the myocardium of Newfoundlands without clinical or echocardiographic evidence of heart disease.

Animals—15 Newfoundlands from a kennel with a known predisposition to dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and 32 dogs of other breeds that died suddenly or were euthanatized for reasons unrelated to heart disease and did not have gross postmortem evidence of heart disease.

Procedure—Echocardiography was performed on all Newfoundlands on a yearly basis. Necropsy specimens from all dogs were evaluated for attenuated wavy fibers (ie, myocardial cells < 6 µm in diameter with a wavy appearance).

Results—None of the Newfoundlands had clinical signs of heart disease, and results of echocardiographic examinations were within reference ranges. Seven Newfoundlands had histologic evidence of attenuated wavy fibers, whereas attenuated wavy fibers were not found in the remaining 8 Newfoundlands or in any of the 32 dogs of other breeds.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Findings suggest that attenuated wavy fibers in dogs with a known predisposition for DCM may indicate an early stage of the disease. However, further studies on a larger number of dogs are needed to confirm this hypothesis. (Am J Vet Res 2000;61:238-241)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate plasma concentrations and urinary excretion of vasopressin and cortisol and urinary excretion of catecholamines in dogs with dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM).

Animals—15 dogs with clinical signs of DCM, 15 dogs with preclinical DCM, and 15 control dogs.

Procedure—Physical examinations, thoracic radiography, ECG, and echocardiography were performed on all dogs. Blood and urine samples were collected.

Results—Plasma concentration of vasopressin and the urine cortisol-to-urine creatinine ratio were significantly increased in dogs with clinical signs of DCM and dogs with preclinical DCM, compared with control dogs. Plasma vasopressin concentration was significantly higher in dogs with clinical signs of DCM, compared with dogs with preclinical DCM. Urine vasopressin-to-urine creatinine ratio was significantly increased in dogs with clinical signs of DCM, compared with dogs with preclinical DCM and control dogs. Urine epinephrine-to-urine creatinine ratio and urine norepinephrine-to-urine creatinine ratio were significantly increased in dogs with clinical signs of DCM, compared with control dogs. Plasma concentration of cortisol and urine dopamine-to-urine creatinine ratio did not differ significantly among groups.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—According to this study, the neuroendocrine pattern is changed in dogs with preclinical DCM. These changes are even more pronounced in dogs with clinical signs of DCM. Analysis of concentrations of vasopressin, cortisol, and catecholamines may aid in identification of the clinical stages of DCM. These findings may also provide a basis for additional studies of the possible beneficial effects of vasopressin antagonists and β-adrenergic receptor antagonists in the treatment of dogs with congestive heart failure and DCM. (Am J Vet Res 2005;66:1709–1717)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Objective

To determine the prevalence of attenuated wavy fibers in the myocardium of dogs with and without dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM).

Design

Prevalence survey.

Animals

70 dogs clinically suspected to have DCM (ie, fractional shortening < 25%, absence of echocardiographic lesions other than chamber dilatation, and radiographic or postmortem evidence of congestive heart failure) and 147 dogs with chronic valvular disease (n = 60), congenital heart disease (49), myocardial infarcts (23), myocarditis (8), or endocarditis (7).

Procedure

Echocardiography and electrocardiography were performed, and thoracic radiographs were obtained with dogs in left lateral recumbency. Necropsy specimens were examined for attenuated wavy fibers (ie, myocardial cells < 6 μm in diameter with a wavy appearance).

Results

65 of 70 dogs clinically suspected to have DCM were confirmed to have the disease on postmortem examination, and 64 of 65 had attenuated wavy fibers. The remaining 5 dogs were found during postmortem examination to have heart disease other than DCM, and none had attenuated wavy fibers. Only 1 of 147 dogs with heart disease other than DCM had attenuated wavy fibers.

Clinical Implications

Findings suggest that histologic examination for attenuated wavy fibers may be a useful postmortem test for DCM in dogs. The diagnosis was confirmed in 65 of 70 dogs suspected to have DCM on the basis of standard clinical criteria. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;212: 1732–1734)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To investigate the effects of IM administration of acepromazine on indices of relative renal blood flow and glomerular filtration rate (GFR) by means of scintigraphy, as well as the effects on physiologic, hematologic, and serum biochemical variables in anesthetized dogs, compared with effects of administration of saline.

Animals—6 healthy Beagles.

Procedure—Acepromazine (0.1 mg/kg) or physiologic saline (0.9 NaCl) solution was administered IM 30 minutes prior to induction of anesthesia with thiopentone; anesthesia was maintained with inspired isoflurane for 2.25 hours. Blood gases and circulatory and ventilatory variables were monitored. Renal function was evaluated by scintigraphic measurements of GFR and relative renal blood flow and analyses of serum and urine. Statistical analyses used ANOVA or Friedman ANOVA.

Results—Values of relative renal blood flow and GFR remained high despite low blood pressures. After administration of acepromazine, mean ± SD arterial blood pressure was 66 ± 8 mm Hg during anesthesia; this value was below the threshold (80 mm Hg) for renal autoregulation of GFR. In comparison, mean arterial blood pressure after administration of saline was significantly higher (87 ± 13 mm Hg). However, between treatments, there were no significant differences in GFR, relative renal blood flow, or other indices of renal function.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Measurements of renal function and blood flow in dogs during anesthesia with thiopentone and isoflurane did not differ significantly between treatments, which suggested that acepromazine protects renal function despite inducing reduction in blood pressure, compared with effects of administration of saline. ( Am J Vet Res 2003; 64:590–598)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To characterize sleeping respiratory rates (SRRs) and resting respiratory rates (RRRs), collected in the home environment, of dogs with subclinical heart disease that could result in left-sided congestive heart failure.

Design—Prospective cross-sectional study.

Animals—190 adult dogs with subclinical left-sided heart disease.

Procedures—Most dogs had mitral valve disease or dilated cardiomyopathy of various severities. Clients collected ten 1-minute SRRs or RRRs during a period ranging from 1 week to 6 months. Clinicians provided echocardiographic and medical data on each patient.

Results—The within-dog mean SRR (SRRmean; 16 breaths/min) was significantly lower than the within-dog mean RRR (RRRmean; 21 breaths/min). Seven dogs had SRRmean and 33 dogs had RRRmean > 25 breaths/min; 1 dog had SRRmean and 12 dogs had RRRmean > 30 breaths/min; these dogs mostly had a left atrial (LA)-to-aortic ratio > 1.8. Dogs with moderate LA enlargement had a significantly higher SRRmean than did other dogs. However, median SRRmean for each of 4 levels of LA enlargement was < 20 breaths/min; median RRRmean for each of 4 levels of LA enlargement was < 25 breaths/min. Both within-dog SRR and RRR remained stable for 10 consecutive measurements. Treatment with cardiac medications or presence of pulmonary hypertension was not associated with SRRmean or RRRmean.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that dogs with confirmed subclinical left-sided heart disease of various severities generally had SRRmean < 25 breaths/min, which was infrequently exceeded at any time, and that SRR and RRR remained stable, regardless of individual within-dog SRRmean or RRRmean. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2013;243:839–843)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Objective

To study the relationship between parental cardiac status in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and development of chronic valvular disease (CVD) in offspring.

Design

Historical cohort.

Animals

54 female and 53 male Cavalier King Charles Spaniel offspring.

Procedure

7 sires, selected on the basis of their liability to develop CVD, were screened for clinical signs of CVD and assigned to 1 of 3 groups (late, intermediate, and early onset of CVD). The mates of these sires (30 dams) were selected and classified likewise, and 107 offspring produced in 1988 from matings between these parents were screened for clinical signs of CVD at a mean age of 5.3 ± 0.3 years.

Results

55% of the offspring were free from clinical signs of CVD, whereas 45% had cardiac murmurs of low or moderate intensity. The proportion of offspring with heart murmurs and the intensity of murmurs were significantly greater with increased parental classification. More males than females had developed murmurs, and murmurs of moderate intensity also were more prevalent in males. Results of multiple-regression analysis indicated that mean parental classification and sex had significant effects on proportion of offspring with murmurs and their intensity. Additionally, age affected disease prevalence and severity, despite the narrow range in age of offspring examined.

Clinical Implications

Parental CVD status is an important factor influencing the probability of heart murmurs and their intensity in offspring. The results of this study indicate that CVD development is a polygenic threshold trait and that sex of the offspring influences threshold levels. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1996;208:2009-2012)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Summary

Plasma concentration of immunoreactive atrial natriuretic peptide (ir-anp) was investigated in 83 Cavalier King Charles Spaniels with variable severity of mitral regurgitation caused by chronic valvular disease (cvd). Severity of mitral incompetence was assessed by echocardiography. Significant differences in plasma concentrations of ir-anp were not found between clinically normal dogs (New York Heart Association functional class O), dogs with only cardiac murmur (class I), and dogs with echocardiographic evidence of slight to moderate left atrial and ventricular dilatation (class II). Dogs with severe left atrial and ventricular dilatation and clinical signs of congestion (classes III and IV) were found to have significantly (P < 0.001) increased plasma concentration of ir-anp. Overall, moderate degree of association was found between plasma concentration of ir-anp and left atrial and left ventricular diameters (Pearson's r = 0.65, 0.60, respectively, P < 0.001), as well as heart rate (r = 0.47, P < 0.01). However, left atrial enlargement was found to have the predominant effect on plasma ir-anp concentration. It is concluded that the plasma concentration of ir-anp did not become markedly increased before decompensation of chronic mitral regurgitation associated with severe enlargement of the left atrium and ventricle in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels.

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To investigate effects of carprofen on indices of renal function and results of serum bio-chemical analyses and effects on cardiovascular variables during medetomidine-propofol-isoflurane anesthesia in dogs.

Animals—8 healthy male Beagles.

Procedures—A randomized crossover study was conducted with treatments including saline (0.9% NaCl) solution (0.08 mL/kg) and carprofen (4 mg/kg) administered IV. Saline solution or carprofen was administered 30 minutes before induction of anesthesia and immediately before administration of medetomidine (20 μg/kg, IM). Anesthesia was induced with propofol and maintained with inspired isoflurane in oxygen. Blood gas concentrations and ventilation were measured. Cardiovascular variables were continuously monitored via pulse contour cardiac output (CO) measurement. Renal function was assessed via glomerular filtration rate (GFR), renal blood flow (RBF), scintigraphy, serum biochemical analyses, urinalysis, and continuous CO measurements. Hematologic analysis was performed.

Results—Values did not differ significantly between the carprofen and saline solution groups. For both treatments, sedation and anesthesia caused changes in results of serum biochemical and hematologic analyses; a transient, significant increase in urine alkaline phosphatase activity; and blood flow diversion to the kidneys. The GFR increased significantly in both groups despite decreased CO, mean arterial pressure, and absolute RBF variables during anesthesia.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Carprofen administered IV before anesthesia did not cause detectable, significant adverse effects on renal function during medetomidine-propofol-isoflurane anesthesia in healthy Beagles.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To investigate whether time-frequency and complexity analyses of heart murmurs can be used to differentiate physiologic murmurs from murmurs caused by aortic stenosis (AS) in Boxers.

Animals—27 Boxers with murmurs.

Procedures—Dogs were evaluated via auscultation and echocardiography. Analyses of time-frequency properties (TFPs; ie, maximal murmur frequency and duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz) and correlation dimension (T2) of murmurs were performed on phonocardiographic sound data. Time-frequency property and T2 analyses of low-intensity murmurs in 16 dogs without AS were performed at 7 weeks and 12 months of age. Additionally, TFP and T2 analyses were performed on data obtained from 11 adult AS-affected dogs with murmurs.

Results—In dogs with low-intensity murmurs, TFP or T2 values at 7 weeks and 12 months did not differ significantly. For differentiation of physiologic murmurs from murmurs caused by mild AS, duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz was useful and the combination assessment of duration of frequency > 200 Hz and T2 of the murmur had a sensitivity of 94% and a specificity of 82%. Maximal murmur frequency did not differentiate dogs with AS from those without AS.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that assessment of the duration of murmur frequency > 200 Hz can be used to distinguish physiologic heart murmurs from murmurs caused by mild AS in Boxers. Combination of this analysis with T2 analysis may be a useful complementary method for diagnostic assessment of cardiovascular function in dogs.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research