Heart Failure in cats

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Purpose and Brief Explanation of Study:

OrangeCatCongestive heart failure (CHF) is a common medical disorder of cats, causing fluid accumulation in the lungs and thoracic cavity with associated respiratory symptoms including tachypnea, labored breathing, inappetance, and lethargy. Cardiac death is a commonly observed outcome. Currently, thoracic radiography is used to establish the diagnosis and follow the course of disease.

However, radiographic diagnosis may be uncertain, in particular in cats with chronic heart failure, exposes cats and people to ionizing radiation, and may require patient sedation, often associated with substantial risk to the patient.

The proposed study will demonstrate that noninvasive, cardiac ultrasound can replace radiography, at least in part, for diagnosis and management of CHF in cats.

Objective of the trial:

This study addresses the hypothesis that echocardiography can identify congestive heart failure (CHF) in cats non-invasively by predicting elevated filling pressure, respiratory rate and radiographic findings diagnostic for CHF.

The goal of this study is to prove that echocardiography makes the repeated radiographic examination in cats with CHF unnecessary.

What qualifies my cat for enrollment in this in this trial?

To participate in this clinical trial your cat must have:

  • Pre-clinical hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) or
  • Congestive heart failure secondary to HCM.

What does enrolling my cat in this clinical trial involve?

Upon assignment to one of the study groups, each cat will undergo a physical examination, Doppler echocardiography under mild sedation, plasma pro-BNP analysis, and thoracic radiography.  The respiratory rates will be recorded at the initial physical examination and again at discharge. The patients will subsequently return for a recheck examination in 5-10 days at which point the examinations and diagnostics will be repeated.

Client Compensation

The study will cover the cost of the bloodwork and testing. The recheck exam in the pre-clinical HCM group will be free of costs.

Client Contact

If you believe your pet may be eligible to enter this study, please click here to fill out a questionnaire. 

Dr. Michelle Rohrbaugh rohrbaugh.16@osu.edu