Care report for a Dogue De Bordeaux with congestive heart failure due to dilated cardiomyopathy
Saturday, July 2, 2016
Dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) is the most common form of acquired myocardial disease in dogs. Congestive heart failure (CHF) is characterised by clinical signs of increased tissue water retention and/or decreased tissue perfusion caused by heart disease such as DCM. When clinical findings are severe sudden death is common. This patient presented in the overt clinical phase of DCM and displayed signs of CHF. The nursing care involves understanding the action of drug therapy and the pathophysiology of heart disease/failure. In conjunction with this, it is important for veterinary nurses (VNs) to consider the nutritional needs of a patient with CHF. Poor body condition score and distinct loss of fat and overall muscle mass are characteristics of cachexia, which is related to the poor prognosis in CHF patients. Good communication with the owner regarding the patient's normal eating habits, could allow the VN to re-create normal routines thus improving the response to food. The ability of the VN to communicate effectively with the owners can optimise patient care and enhance quality of life for the patient.
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