If a vet listens to a cat’s heartbeat and hears unusual sounds, further testing may be needed, but they will generally diagnose a heart murmur. The vet listens to the heartbeat, rhythm, and sounds to determine if the heart is showing any irregularities. The health of the cat will determine if there is a concern about this heart condition.
Types of Feline Health Heart Murmurs
Two types are physiological and pathological conditions. The physiological murmur occurs when fever or anemia is present. The pathological murmur arises when a condition affects the cat’s valves and heart muscle. Researchers ran tests to get more information about heart murmurs in cats.
A veterinary clinic in Boston conducted a test on 100 cats and found that twenty-one percent of the cats had a heart murmur. Of the twenty-one percent, seven cats received an echocardiogram and six cats actually had a heart problem called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. The result of the study showed that healthy cats can show signs of a heart murmur, but without proper testing, the result and diagnosis are inconclusive.
Heart murmurs are measured in notes. There are six different types of grades from I to VI, with grade VI being the most severe and grade I being mild. Vets grade the murmur, but the VI murmur does not make it the worst murmur to have in a cat.
Problems with heart murmurs in cats
Some kittens are born with heart murmurs that go away by the time they are six months old. The random heart murmur occurs in cats that appear healthy, but they may show signs of weakness and color changes in the skin and tongue. A heart murmur may also occur in a cat showing signs of poor health. The only way to tell if a heart murmur is present is to do tests.
The severity of a heart murmur can only be determined by ultrasound. If you need to have your cat spayed or spayed, a vet may insist on an X-ray or ultrasound to determine how severe the heart murmur is before performing the surgery. The cat that is born with a heart murmur is usually more likely to receive a lower type than an older cat who develops a heart murmur later in life.
For the most part, feline heart murmurs do not require treatment unless they become severe or cause other health problems. There is a possibility of congestive heart failure in cats, although this is rare, this may mean your vet will order tests for your cat if it has a heart murmur. If you suspect your cat has a heart murmur, the only thing you can do is do an exam to determine the degree of the heart murmur, and then follow the vet’s advice on your cat’s care and treatment. The cat needs a healthy and happy life and only you know your cat’s personality and activities.
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