Case Studies In Small Animal

Cardiovascular Medicine

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Case 32

Seven months after the initial diagnosis

Presenting Complaints

bulletRecheck examination

Pertinent History

bulletMickey presented today for a recheck for his taurine responsive dilated cardiomyopathy. He was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy seven moths ago and has been responsive to taurine over the last 5 months. Mickey receives 500mg of taurine daily mixed in baby food and also is on a diet of Iams dry food and chicken breast. The client reports that Mickey is doing well and currently has no problems except for loss of sight which has not resolved with taurine treatment.

Physical Examination

bulletBARH. Wt=4.4kg. HR=150 RR=36. BARH. MM pink and CRT=1.5 sec. Femoral pulses strong with no deficits. No murmur. Gallop rhythm. Eupneic. Bronchovesicular sounds in all lung fields within normal limits. Anterior chamber, sclera, and conjunctiva are clear. PLRs present direct and indirect bilaterally. Ears are clean. Moderate gingivitis. Severe tartar. No masses palpated in abdomen. No lymphadenopathy.


bulletTaurine responsive dilated cardiomyopathy

Clinical Diagnoses

bulletTaurine responsive dilated cardiomyopathy


bulletPE: A soft, intermittent extra heart sound is heard  (present only at elevated heart rates).
bulletECHOCARDIOGRAPHY: IVS (d) 0.5 cm (s) 0.6 cm, LVEDD 1.5 cm, LVESD 0.8 cm, SF 42%, LVFWd 0.5 cm, Ao:LA 8.7:10.5 mm.
bulletASSESSMENT: Mickey responded extremely well to taurine therapy. The shortening fraction, end-systolic, and end-diastolic diameters are all within normal range. The vision is likely not to improve with therapy.
bulletPLAN: Continue taurine supplementation.

Discharge Summary

bulletMickey presented for a recheck for her taurine responsive dilated cardiomyopathy. Physical exam was unremarkable except for an extra heart sound, which is unlikely to be a gallop sound since Mickey's cardiac function is now normal. This may be a systolic click. Echocardiography was within normal limits, which means Mickey's heart disease is cured. Mickey will return for a re-check in one year.

Mark D. Kittleson, D.V.M., Ph.D. All rights reserved.