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Thread: preventive treatments for murmurs

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by frecklesmom View Post
    Regarding your Vet hearing or not hearing a murmur, Petcrazyme, you have to take that with a "grain of salt".
    Yes exactly Frecklesmom! That's why I said 'regular' vet ..meaning what that vet heard or didn't hear doesn't mean squat. I went on to say that "it's not a matter of 'if' MVD appears but 'when'". I fully expect that my cavalier will at some point in time suffer from symptoms due to MVD. That is known. What I don't know is what I can do now for preventative measures. I'll keep my eye on this post to see what other's are doing. I'm interested in the CoEnzymeQ10 supplement that was mentioned but hesitate to supplement a young dog with anything until I know more.

  2. #12
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    Just to give some peace of mind to anyone thinking about supplemention with CoQ10 it is generally well tolerated, and all of my studies and research on this particular supplement has yielded favorable results (for humans and canines!). From the advice in the book I mentioned earlier, many vets are using this supplement as a preventative in dogs who are prone to cardio and valvular issues.
    It's important not only to talk with your vet about this, but also to make sure that your vet will be knowledgeable about nutritional therapy. In my hometown, only one of the 5 vets would consider speaking with me about herbal & nutritional medicine, and she wasn't a certified Holistic Veterinarian. I've run across vets who are willing to give treatments like this a shot, but that doesn't leave me with a warm and fuzzy feeling... I'd rather find someone who has experience with this sort of therapy.

    Good luck!

    Melissa

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pat View Post
    At 4 months of age Oz was diagnosed with a Grade 1 murmur caused by leaking across the mitral valve
    ---------------------
    Whoa, this is really significant info for me. I've never before heard of a dog younger than about a year diagnosed with endocardiosis (acquired valvular disease, the problem so common in Cavaliers). ...

    Rod - if you are out there, have you ever heard about this or read any veterinary papers about it?
    This is a real shock to me. I don't doubt its accuracy, because I know the cardiologists who are involved. I have never heard of a Cavalier that young with a confirmed MVD murmur. It would not surprise me if the cardiologists publish a case study of this dog.

    As for supplements, I suggest these basic ones, which would be good for any Cavalier, even those without MVD murmurs:

    -- Vitamin C (300 to 400 mg. daily)

    -- Vitamin E -- Tocopherol (100 I.U. daily)

    -- CoQ10 (30 mg. daily)

    -- Fish oils high in Omegas 3 and 6 -- such as wild salmon oil -- (about 400 mg. daily)

    Since the dog already has a murmur, you might conisder a general cardiac supplement like:

    -- Bio-Cardio, by Thorne Veterinary Products.

    -- Canine Cardiac Support, by Standard Process, Inc.

    I think that these products are obtainable only through a veterinarian, but you could ask your vet to order them for you. These are holistic supplements, so some conventional vets will think these things are a waste of time. Their usual response is: "There are no peer-reviewed, double-blind studies finding that these supplements are of any value."

  4. #14
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    Be careful with vitamin C though - you shouldn't give it in conjunction with prednisolone {or Medrone - Methyprednisolone} or Frusemide {lasix} as it can give rise to calcium oxalate crystals in the urine, as these drugs affect the way it is broken down and excreted.

    COQ10 only actually has an effect on heart muscle - so there isn't really any point {in MVD} in giving it until there is muscle involvement - ie the heart is enlarged. However it is supposed to help with dental health, so it may be worth starting it earlier for that reason as bacteria from dirty teeth can cause a deterioration in heart condition.
    Nicki and the Cavalier Clan Our photos www.scotlandimagery.com
    Supporting www.rupertsfund.com and www.cavaliermatters.org

  5. #15
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    I have been giving Geordie CoQ10 30mg daily since his cardiologist started him on Enalapril in 2008.
    Cathy Moon
    India(tri-F) Geordie(blen-M)Chocolate(b&t-F)Charlie(at the bridge)

  6. #16
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    Sorry it's taken awhile for me to get back - my 13 1/2 year old is in the midst of a vestibular episode that started last night so I've been preoccupied with that. And it takes me a long time to do posts because of the time I spend checking the literature, etc. I'll break the post into comments about MVD age of onset, food and supplements. I wish I could just scan pages and post but these forums don't allow for posting attachments and I'd be a little concerned about copyright laws also.

    For those who want to do research for themselves, I highly recommend these texts (not terribly expensive and found on Amazon and other places):

    Manual of Canine and Feline Cardiology (Saunders) - I have the third edition edited by Goodwin and Tilley (2001) and I just purchased the fourth edition (200 edited by Tilley, Smith, Oyama and Sleeper (Dr. Goodwin, a wonderful man, has sadly died).

    Small Animal Cardiology Secrets, Jonathan A. Abbott, DVM (2000) (this book is really inexpensive and is fairly easy to understand). However, it is now somewhat dated since there has been much progression in treatment options.

    Notes on Cardiorespiratory Diseases of the Dog and Cat - Mike Martin, Brendan Corcoran (Blackwell Publishing - 2006) These clinicians are from the UK so it was interesting for me to compare with the US vet texts

    Kirk's Current Veterinary Therapy XIV (edited by John Bonagura and David Twedt - 200 This text is the "Bible" of cutting edge diagnosis and therapy. I have the last three volumes. It is published about every ten years and covers the latest and greatest "stuff" in the vet world. There is one chapter on endocardiosis here. I just purchased this about a week ago. I've been intending to do a long post about the chapter on SM (which was not mentioned in the previous editions), and I'll get to that eventually. I've already transcribed a good bit of info about some of the recent topics on various boards such as brain/skull size, etc., etc.

    Back to the above texts, the first two I highly recommend for anyone. Price is about $80 and $40 (not bad compared to other vet texts). The pertinent sections for Cavalier owners are really pretty easy to understand, and the more you read, the more familiar you become with terms and the more you will understand. This gives a wonderful education so that you can talk more intelligently with your GP vet and your cardio about diagnosis and treatment planning. Professionals give much more information to clients who "speak the language"!
    -----------------
    First topic - age of onset.

    Bev, I would love to have a copy of the various reports you have. I have a filing cabinet full of 20 years of reports written by various cardios on many dogs, mine and others. I should be able to understand most of the report by virtue of having read so many for so long. I'll pm my street address to you, or you could scan and email to patbeman@comcast.net

    As Rod said, those are excellent clinicians and I do not doubt the findings, which makes Oz rather extraordinary so I'm eager to learn more about him.

    I did a long search of the literature. Every text said "middle aged to older dogs" and every text mentioned that CKCS were an exception as "clinical evidence" of the disease was found in "younger" dogs than the norm with more rapid progression. The only references I've found that mention a specific age are:

    My notes from the 1996 seminar, as I mentioned (and Rod was sitting near me taking his own notes!) where Dr. Beardow (who with Dr. Buchanan had done a U.S. study of Cavaliers noting ages of dogs and grades of murmurs) said that one year of age was "about the youngest" where an MVD murmur was heard.

    Dr. Abbott in Small Animal Cardiology Secrets - Chapter 34 - "Degenerative Valvular Disease" page 213..." Point#7 - "What is distinctive about MVD that affects the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel?"....." "In the CKCS, murmurs of mitral valve regurgitation are occasionally encountered in dogs as young as 2 and 3 years."

    Somewhere in my attic are newsletters that I did as editor for COS way back in the early 90's that include data from Gil Jacobs' (bd. cert. cardio) heart clinics. He listed ages 1-10 and numbers of Cavaliers with murmurs. There were never any dogs younger than 1 included and as I recall very few or no dogs with a murmur at age 1 but there were some dogs at age 2.

    That sums up age of onset info. I'll post again later about food and supplements.

    Oh - someone used the term "snap" - that would be a systolic or mid-systolic "click" which is the proper terminology. Clicks are thought to be a precursor to a murmur and could represent a prolapsed valve (This is where the two valve leaflets are deformed, bowed inward, but still close pretty tightly so there is not yet any regurgitant jet and so not yet a murmur. A prolapsed valve, though, can go on to become an incompetent valve which starts leaking).

    Pat
    Atlanta, GA

  7. #17
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    I don't understand the "cool" icon where I typed the number eight!! I typed the year of publication - two thousand and eight - and got the icon.

    Sigh.......

    Pat

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pat View Post
    My notes from the 1996 seminar, as I mentioned (and Rod was sitting near me taking his own notes!) where Dr. Beardow (who with Dr. Buchanan had done a U.S. study of Cavaliers noting ages of dogs and grades of murmurs) said that one year of age was "about the youngest" where an MVD murmur was heard.

    Dr. Abbott in Small Animal Cardiology Secrets - Chapter 34 - "Degenerative Valvular Disease" page 213..." Point#7 - "What is distinctive about MVD that affects the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel?"....." "In the CKCS, murmurs of mitral valve regurgitation are occasionally encountered in dogs as young as 2 and 3 years."
    Yes, I was there in Atlanta, too. Although it actually was in May 1998 (I hope that eight comes out as a numeral and not an icon). I have a verbatim transcript of the symposium, and while it is not in front of me now, I recall that one of the cardiologists at the presentation -- I think it was Buchanan -- said that there are two distinctive things about MVD in Cavaliers. One is, as Dr. Abbott states in the quote above, that murmurs appear earlier in the CKCS than in the average dog. That is called "early-onset" MVD, with murmurs being heard as early as one year of age. The other is that MVD is about 20 times more prevalent in the CKCS than in other breeds.

    Early-onset means having an MVD murmur before the fifth birthday.

    While Oz having a murmur at such an early age -- under one year -- is not good news, hopefully it will be slow to progress. If it stays at grade one or two for several years, Oz may have a long and happy life even with MVD. But Oz certainly ought to have an ascultation by a cardiologist at least yearly and perhaps more frequently if recommended by the cardiologist.

  9. #19
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    Thank you Rod, Pat, and everyone else. Rod, PM me if you would like a copy of his reports. I have sent an e-mail to Pat about sending them to her. Right now, Oz's cardiologist does not seem concerned about his murmur, but she does want to see him at least yearly and more frequently if he develops any signs of worsening disease. He is my little energizer bunny - he never seems to stop going. Just a real little pistol and such a love bug. I hope he stays this way for a very long time.
    Bev
    Oliver (blenheim, born 3/2001), Riley (black & tan, born 8/2002,), Madison (ruby, born 9/2003), and Oz (tri-color, born 7/2007)

  10. #20
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    Does anyone know where I can get CoQ10 in the 30 mg dose? The lowest dose I found is 50 mg. Thanks,
    Bev
    Oliver (blenheim, born 3/2001), Riley (black & tan, born 8/2002,), Madison (ruby, born 9/2003), and Oz (tri-color, born 7/2007)

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