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Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in a dog: a systematic diagnostic approach.

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Silva, J 
Regada, S 
Rizzo, S 


A seven-year-old female neutered Parson Russel terrier was referred for syncopal episodes. An electrocardiogram revealed paroxysmal atrial flutter followed by periods of sinus arrest, suggesting sick sinus syndrome. Echocardiography showed severe biventricular wall thickening (hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM) phenotype) with no signs of fixed or dynamic left ventricular outflow tract obstruction. Blood pressure, abdominal ultrasound, serum total thyroxin and thyroid-stimulating hormone, and insulin-like growth factor-1 were all within normal limits. Cardiac troponin I was elevated (1.7 ng/mL, ref<0.07). Serological tests for common infectious diseases were negative. A 24-h Holter confirmed that the syncopal episodes were associated with asystolic pauses (sinus arrest after runs of atrial flutter) ranging between 8.5 and 9.6 s. Right ventricular endomyocardial biopsies (EMB) were performed at the time of pacemaker implantation to assess for storage or infiltrative diseases that mimic HCM in people. Histological analysis of the EMB revealed plurifocal inflammatory infiltrates with macrophages and lymphocytes (CD3+ > 7/mm2) associated with myocyte necrosis, but no evidence of myocyte vacuolisation or infiltrative myocardial disorders. These findings were compatible with myocardial ischaemic injury or acute lymphocytic myocarditis. Molecular analysis of canine cardiotropic viruses were negative. The dog developed refractory congestive heart failure and was euthanised 16 months later. Cardiac post-mortem examination revealed cardiomyocyte hypertrophy and disarray with diffuse interstitial and patchy replacement fibrosis, and small vessel disease, confirming HCM. We described a systemic diagnostic approach to an HCM phenotype in a dog, where a diagnosis of HCM was reached by excluding HCM phenocopies.



Endomyocardial biopsy, Pacemaker, Sick sinus syndrome, Humans, Female, Dogs, Animals, Atrial Flutter, Cardiomyopathy, Hypertrophic, Heart, Heart Failure, Myocarditis, Syncope, Dog Diseases

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J Vet Cardiol

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Elsevier BV