Re: [FH] HCM
- I know this is scary, but hang in there --- we will all help you. My little Scottish Fold Tigger was diagnosed at 6 months of age and put on atenolol, and he's 7 1/2 years old now, and you can't even tell that he's sick! This disease manifests differently in each cat, so we never know what will happen. You do have to be prepared to take quick action if he does have any kind of crisis -- but he might never have one! Lots of HCM cats live perfectly normal long lives. Atenolol really helps, and there are other meds that can be added later if needed. What is your kitty's name and breed?
I don't give any supplements to Tigger except for lysine for his herpes.... but others in this group give assorted supplements, including CoQ10, so I'll let them comment on that.
You want to keep an eye on your kitty for signs of breathing problems (his breaths per minute should be less than 30 at rest, 23 is ideal -- nearing 40 is an emergency -- be sure you know where the nearest ER is and their hours.). Also watch for limping, pain, etc. But remember, he doesn't know that he's sick -- and he will pick up on it if you're always fussing over him. So try to treat him as normally as possible, including playtime -- just don't overdo. Stop immediately if you see open-mouthed or labored deep breathing.
take care -- Michelle & Tigger Too in Toronto
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Sunday, March 04, 2012 10:59 AM
Subject: [FH] HCM
My 7 month old kitten was diagnosed with HCM on friday, He will be starting Atenolol tomorrow in hope it helps his heart murmur, we was told his HCM is moderate and he will have a few years to live, he is a much loved member of our cat family and really cant imagine life without him. would be most gratful if anybody has any success story's about certain drugs that is worth trying, have been recommended that he starts Coq 10.
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- Deb:Sorry to hear you and your little boy have to deal with HCM. I know it's a devastating diagnosis, and everyone here has felt that panic of not knowing how long you have. My Tink was diagnosed when he was probably 11 years old, after a heart murmur was found during an exam. He wasn't placed on any medication for it until this year, when his blood pressure elevated and required Atenolol for treatment. The only other related medication he has been on is methimazole for hyperthyroidism. He is also on a tiny dose of prednisone for arthritis issues (it's a terrible drug for a heart kitty, if there was a choice, but in his case it's a matter of quality of life over quantity of life...he's miserable without that medication).Over the years, we've had a couple of echocardiograms done, but it stresses him and I haven't kept repeating it. He has had more EKGs, even as recently as the beginning of this year, and a few years ago he needed a dental done, but the cardiologist read his EKG and said it was not safe to put him under anesthesia. His heart disease is obviously progressing based on the EKGs, but we've been very very VERY lucky overall. Now for the good news. My sweet little snuggle bug celebrated his 21st birthday in April. We know his actual birthday within a 3-day window, as he was "7 to 10 days old" per the vet, when we found him and his sister abandoned and sick in a drainage ditch on the side of the road. I bottle fed him, and he's my baby boy. :) I really don't remember which year he was diagnosed, but it was close to the time his sister died from cancer, and they were just over 11 years old when she passed. Somewhere around 10 years we've been aware of the HCM, and he is still with me. I know we've been incredibly lucky, and I feel so blessed to still have him with me.Try to enjoy every day you have with your boy. None of us know how long we have, but sometimes we get very lucky, and get to spend more time with our babies. Keep an eye out for the warning signs that things are progressing and medical attention is required, but otherwise just enjoy your boy. :) I tend to "lurk" on the list for the most part, but there are SO many helpful people here. If you have questions, just ask. This wonderful group has been GREAT support over the years, and I can't say enough wonderful things about these people.I hope you have many, many more wonderful years with your little boy! :)Dana and Tink (who is napping in the sunshine, stretched out on his giant cushion in the bay window)