Friday, October 26, 2012

Veterinary Highlights: New Hope For Dogs With Fatal Heart Disease?

An international study revealed a clear survival benefit associated with the administration of pimobendan (Vetmedin) in the preclinical phase of canine dilated cardiomyopathy.

Photo by channah

Dilated cardiomyopathy is a condition in which the heart becomes weakened and enlarged. As a result, it cannot pump enough blood. This condition is the most common cause of congestive heart failure CHF).

The study concluded that treatment with pimobendan (Vetmedin) delays the onset of heart failure or sudden death, and brings a significant increase in overall survival time.

I am not a big fan of drugs, but there is certainly a time and place for them. Half the dogs in the study received conventional treatment, and the other half was treated with Pimobendan.

Dogs with CHF treated with conventional therapy, including an ACE inhibitor, lived approximately four months. Dogs who received pimobendan lived about 9 months longer.

How does this drug work? It acts in two ways. It opens up the blood vessels, which reduces the workload on the heart, and it increases the strength of the heartbeat, improving its function.
Source: Vetmedin

The results seem conclusive that pimobendan is by far a superior treatment for dilated cardiomyopathy in dogs. This one is going into my notes.

1 comment

  1. Interesting...and well timed! I just wrote a DCM post slated to go up sometime next week. Now I have something else to link to in it!