Prevalence of Congenital Heart Disease in Cats: An Overview from 2000 to 2011
In cats, congenital heart disease (CHD) is rare; nonetheless, it can have important clinical manifestations.
To evaluate the prevalence of congenital heart defects in a veterinary teaching hospital cardiology service feline population.
A retrospective study was conducted between January 2000 and December 2011.
A total of 849 cats were admitted to the cardiology service during this period; 16 (1.88%) were diagnosed with cardiac malformation. Among these cases, four were excluded due to incomplete record information, and 12 were included. Simple cardiac anomalies were observed in six cases (50%), and the other half presented associated or complex defects. A total of 18 congenital defects were detected, four were persistent ductus arteriosus (PDA) (22,22%), three aortic stenosis (AS), three pulmonic stenosis (PS), and three tricuspid dysplasia (TD) (16,67% each), followed by mitral dysplasia, dextrocardia, ventricular septal defect, atrial septal defect and tetralogy of Fallot (one of each, 5.56%). The most common CHD with other associated defects were PDA, PS and AS. Among the 12 cases, 10 (83,33%) were seen in undefined/mixed-breed cats, and two (16,67%) were Persian.
The findings observed in this study emphasize the importance of echocardiographic with Doppler exam to establish a precise diagnosis in cats, especially in the occurrence of associated defects. Although PDA has been the most common CHD in cats, differing from literature and previous surveys from this same service, the small number of cats referred may have influenced the results.