Preclinical dilated cardiomyopathy and advances in treatment

Charlotte Pace
Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Stages of DCMDCM has been described as having distinct stages (Table 2). The first stage contains dogs with no abnormal findings on echocardiography (echo) or electrocardiography (ECG); however, they are at risk of developing the disease at a later time. The next stage is the ‘occult’ or preclinical stage. During this stage, echocardiographic changes can be seen, such as left ventricular enlargement and/or VPCs can be identified on ECG. However no clinical signs are seen and the animal will generally appear outwardly healthy and normal to the owner. The final stage is CHF, also known as the ‘overt’ phase of DCM. As mentioned, even with optimal treatment, survival time once in CHF is generally very short (Martin et al, 2010).Table 2.Phases of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM)Stages of DCMClinical findings1. At-riskNormal cardiac appearance on echocardiography and on electrocardiography (ECG), with no clinical signs2. OccultVentricular premature complexes are seen on ECG (a common finding with early stage DCM in Dobermans)And/or Echocardiographic changes start to appear, e.g. left ventricular dilatation3. OvertClinical signs of heart failure, +/- arrhythmiasWess et al, 2011

Preclinical dilated cardiomyopathy and advances in treatment
Preclinical dilated cardiomyopathy and advances in treatment

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