Canis ISSN: 2398-2942

Therapeutics: cardiovascular

Contributor(s): Serena Brownlie, Sonja Fonfara, Clare Targett, Lauren Trepanier, Liz Bode

Introduction

  • The cardiovascular system comprises of the heart and the vasculature.  
  • When cardiac function is compromised it can lead to congestive heart failure or arrhythmia formation. 
  • In congestive heart failure the aim is to remove the congestion and improve cardiac performance, where possible. 
  • Drugs used for the management of congestive heart failure include: 
    • Diuretics. 
    • Pimobendan. 
    • ACE inhibitors. 
    • Spironolactone. 
    • Other positive inotropes and vasodilators. 
  • Arrhythmias can come in multiple different forms and not all require treatment. 
  • Drugs used to manage ventricular tachycardias include: 
    • Lidocaine 
    • Sotalol. 
    • Mexilitine. 
    • Amiodarone. 
    • Beta-blockers.
  • Drugs used to manage supraventricular tachycardias include: 
    • Diltiazem 
    • Digoxin. 
    • Sotalol. 
    • Amiodarone. 
    • Beta-blockers.
  • Management of bradyarrhythmias may be medical or surgical (pacemaker implantation), but depends on the underlying cause.  
Not all drugs listed here are licensed for this species in all countries.

Myocardial stimulants

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Diuretics

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Vasodilators

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Drugs for tachyarrhythmias

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Adrenoceptor stimulants

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Anticoagulants

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Borgarelli M, Ferasin L, Lamb K et al (2020) DELay of Appearance of sYmptoms of Canine Degenerative Mitral Valve Disease Treated with Spironolactone and Benazepril: the DELAY Study. J Vet Cardiol 27, 34-53 PubMed.
  • Keene B W, Atkins C E, Bonagura J D et al (2019) ACVIM consensus guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of myxomatous mitral valve disease in dog. JVIM 33 (3), 1127-1140 PubMed.
  • Boswood A, Haggstrom J, Gordon S et al (2016) Effect of Pimobendan in Dogs with Preclinical Myxomatous Mitral Valve Disease and Cardiomegaly: The EPIC Study-A Randomized Clinical Trial. JVIM 30 (6), 1765-1779 PubMed.
  • Summerfield N J, Boswood A, O’Grady M R et al (2012) Efficacy of pimobendan in the prevention of congestive heart failure or sudden death in Doberman Pinschers with preclinical dilated cardiomyopathy (the PROTECT study). JVIM 26 (6), 1337-1349 PubMed.
  • Chetboul V, Pouchelon J L, Menard J et al (2017) Short-term efficacy and safety of torasemide and furosemide in 366 dogs with degenerative mitral valve disease: the TEST study. JVIM 31 (6), 1629-1642 PubMed.
  • Bernay F, Bland J M, Häggström J et al (2010) Efficacy of spironolactone on survival in dogs with naturally occurring mitral regurgitation caused by myxomatous mitral valve disease. JVIM 24 (2), 331-341 PubMed.
  • Gelzer A R, Kraus M S, Rishniw M et al (2009) Combination therapy with digoxin and diltiazem controls ventricular rate in chronic atrial fibrillation in dogs better than digoxin or diltiazem monotherapy: a randomized crossover study in 18 dogs. JVIM 23 (3), 499-508 PubMed.
  • Häggström J, Boswood A, O'Grady M et al (2008) Effect of pimobendan or benazepril hydrochloride on survival times in dogs with congestive heart failure caused by naturally occurring myxomatous mitral valve disease: the QUEST study. JVIM 22 (5), 1124-1135 PubMed.
  • O'Grady M R, Minors S L, O'Sullivan M L et al (2008) Effect of pimobendan on case fatality rate in Doberman Pinschers with congestive heart failure caused by dilated cardiomyopathy. JVIM 22 (4), 897-904 PubMed.
  • Smith P J, French A T, Van Israël N et al (2005) Efficacy and safety of pimobendan in canine heart failure caused by myxomatous mitral valve disease. JSAP 46 (3), 121-130 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Opie L H, Gersh B J (2013) Drugs for the heart. 8th edn. Saunders, Elsevier.


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