Possible ventricular late potentials in Doberman Pinschers with occult cardiomyopathy

Clay A. Calvert From the Department of Small Animal Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602.

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Gilbert J. Jacobs From the Department of Small Animal Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602.

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Marc Kraus From the Department of Small Animal Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30602.

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Objective

To determine whether ventricular late potentials, detected by means of signal-averaged electrocardiography (SAECG), were associated with sudden death in Doberman Pinschers with occult cardiomyopathy.

Design

Case series.

Animals

39 Doberman Pinschers with occult cardiomyopathy.

Procedure

Cardiomyopathy was diagnosed by means of serial echocardiography and ambulatory electrocardiography; SAECG was performed 1 or more times for each dog.

Results

12 dogs died suddenly; the other 27 died after developing overt clinical signs of congestive heart failure. Results of SAECG were associated with outcome, and dogs in which ventricular late potentials were detected were more likely to die suddenly. However, 5 dogs for which results of SAECG were normal (n = 2) or equivocal (3) also died suddenly.

Clinical Implications

Results suggest that SAECG may be useful in predicting whether Doberman Pinschers with occult cardiomyopathy, confirmed on the basis of results of echocardiography, are at risk of dying suddenly. However, the possibility of sudden death cannot be ruled out simply because results of SAECG are normal. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;213:235-239)

Objective

To determine whether ventricular late potentials, detected by means of signal-averaged electrocardiography (SAECG), were associated with sudden death in Doberman Pinschers with occult cardiomyopathy.

Design

Case series.

Animals

39 Doberman Pinschers with occult cardiomyopathy.

Procedure

Cardiomyopathy was diagnosed by means of serial echocardiography and ambulatory electrocardiography; SAECG was performed 1 or more times for each dog.

Results

12 dogs died suddenly; the other 27 died after developing overt clinical signs of congestive heart failure. Results of SAECG were associated with outcome, and dogs in which ventricular late potentials were detected were more likely to die suddenly. However, 5 dogs for which results of SAECG were normal (n = 2) or equivocal (3) also died suddenly.

Clinical Implications

Results suggest that SAECG may be useful in predicting whether Doberman Pinschers with occult cardiomyopathy, confirmed on the basis of results of echocardiography, are at risk of dying suddenly. However, the possibility of sudden death cannot be ruled out simply because results of SAECG are normal. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;213:235-239)

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