## Re: new member with question

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• Just a quick reply, but with regards to counting the heart rate at the time of giving her Atentolol. Drugs go up in concentration in the blood depending on
Message 1 of 12 , Dec 2, 2002
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Just a quick reply, but with regards to counting the heart rate at
the time of giving her Atentolol. Drugs go up in concentration in
the blood depending on their biologic half life. I am not sure what
the half life is for this drug but most of them are on the order of
a few hours. So when you give the cat the drug initially, the
amount in the blood goes up until reaching some equilibrium. From
there is slowly goes down in concentration. Measuring the heart
rate from hour to hour, you will probably not be able to detect much
difference aside from what normally would be there. If you were to
do the same and measure the heart rate say tonight and then measure
it in 2 days, you certainly would notice a difference. The key is,
you would not want to do that due to the side effects.

--- In feline-heart@y..., "mereminne" <mereminne@m...> wrote:
> Hello everyone,
>
> I haven't posted here before. I've been learning some things by
> reading all the posts, & now I have a question. If anyone can
> that would be great... I tried counting my cat Abby's heart rate
last
> night by listening to her left side, and -- this is probably the
> stupidest new member question ever(!) but here goes --
> should I be counting the beats like this:
> 1and/2and/3and/4and/5and/6and/7and/8and
> or like this:
> 1/2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9/10/11/12/13/14/15/16?
>
> I assume it's the first way (since the heart goes "lub-DUB",
right)?
> I counted 72 thumps in 15 seconds, and I guess that would mean the
> heart beat 36 times? I was using a digital clock instead of a
second
> hand, so I should probably do it again, but I did this 4-5 times
and
> it seemed almost always to come out to that many thumps per 15
> seconds. If I multiply that by 4 her heart rate would be 144 I
guess?
>
> Abby is on Atenolol, and her cardiologist just advised me to bump
it
> up to 1/2 tab from 1/4 because at our visit this past Friday,
Abby's
> heart rate was higher than she thought it should be. But I
noticed
> that Abby's heart rate seemed to be the same last night before I
gave
> her Atenolol and 2 hours after I gave it. I'm not sure what to
think
>
> A little background on my Abby -- she is 17 and 1/2 and had
surgery
> for Vaccine-Associated Fibrosarcoma in September. The pre-surgery
> tests, including an Echocardiogram, showed that she has
Hypertrophic
> Cardiomyopathy and renal insufficiency. They put her on Atenolol
at
> that time. At her last oncology follow-up the oncologist said she
> should now see a cardiologist, so Friday was our first appointment
> with one. They did a follow up Echocardiogram and for now (knock
on
> wood) Abby's heart and kidneys seem to have stabilized. The VAS
> cancer is a nasty one, Abby's sister passed away from it 1 and 1/2
> years ago so I caught Abby's more quickly & we are hoping it was
in
> time although with VAS you almost don't dare to hope. I am on the
> VAS Yahoo group too, and haven't really had time to start up
posting
> here a lot as well, but I am so grateful to find all of this
> information. I wish I had known more about these groups while
Abby's
> sister Melissa was going through her illness.
>
> Thanks for being here!
> Lacy, Abby & Melissa
> New York, NY
• hi Lacy (and Abby & Melissa) - welcome to the group ... I m sorry I don t have answers to your questions (but it looks like others have been helpful). If you
Message 2 of 12 , Dec 3, 2002
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hi Lacy (and Abby & Melissa) -

welcome to the group ... I'm sorry I don't have answers to your
questions (but it looks like others have been helpful). If you don't
mind my asking - do you have a cardiologist that you have been happy
with in the NYC metro area? I need a 2nd opinion on my Pacino (low
grade heart murmur; no evidence of HCM found yet).

I appreciate any recommendations, and I truly hope Abby feels better
soon. (I can sympathize with your situation - I lost my Targa-cat to
a saddle thrombis in August, and am now very anxious about Pacino.)
My thoughts are with you, Abby and Melissa.

-Shelly

--- In feline-heart@y..., "mereminne" <mereminne@m...> wrote:
> Dear Barbara,
>
> Thank you for so much for answering me. I am still at the
beginning of
> learning about feline heart disease, and we are already looking at
a
> visit the kidney doctor since that was recommended by Abby's
> cardiologist. I want to be as informed as possible & so I thank
you
I
> wish you and Widget good luck.
>
> healing thoughts
> Lacy, Abby & Melissa
>
> --- In feline-heart@y..., "lipmancats" <barbaralipman@e...> wrote:
> > Hi,
> > There is no such thing as a stupid question!
> > Your first guess on counting heart beats is correct.
> > Our Widget has a gallop rhythm (short-long, short-long), so
getting a
> > heart rate on him is tough, even for our vet. The more you
listen,
> > the easier hearing what's normal for your kitty gets.
> > I'm so sorry you've had to deal with VAS. Cancer is such a scary
> > thing. A good oncologist can make such a difference. I'm glad
> > you've got the heart and kidney issues under control.
> > Hope Abby continues to do well.
> > Take care,
> > Barbara and the furry crew
• Hi Shelly, Since August, I have been taking Abby to the Animal Medical Center at 62nd and York Avenue in Manhattan. Our cardiologist is Betsy Bond. I had
Message 3 of 12 , Dec 3, 2002
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Hi Shelly,

Since August, I have been taking Abby to the Animal Medical Center at
62nd and York Avenue in Manhattan. Our cardiologist is Betsy Bond. I
had never taken my girls to the AMC but it was recommended highly when
Abby got VAS cancer and I've since learned it's a "state of the art"
teaching facility. I'm hoping I'm doing the best I can for Abby. It's
also a 24-hour facility. It can be a little frustrating as it's a
large hospital so you sometimes have to wait a long time in the waiting
room & make sure to keep track of things yourself -- but as I said,
they are supposedly a top-notch facility so if you're looking for a
second opinion it might be a good bet.

take care,
Lacy, Abby & Melissa

--- In feline-heart@y..., "targa66" <sgorove@g...> wrote:
> hi Lacy (and Abby & Melissa) -
>
> welcome to the group ... I'm sorry I don't have answers to your
> questions (but it looks like others have been helpful). If you don't
> mind my asking - do you have a cardiologist that you have been happy
> with in the NYC metro area? I need a 2nd opinion on my Pacino (low
> grade heart murmur; no evidence of HCM found yet).
>
> I appreciate any recommendations, and I truly hope Abby feels better
> soon. (I can sympathize with your situation - I lost my Targa-cat to
> a saddle thrombis in August, and am now very anxious about Pacino.)
> My thoughts are with you, Abby and Melissa.
>
> -Shelly
>
• Thank you very much for writing.. I m still a little confused about this. I measured her heart rate before, & 2 hours after, giving her the drug & I did not
Message 4 of 12 , Dec 3, 2002
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Thank you very much for writing.. I'm still a little confused about
this. I measured her heart rate before, & 2 hours after, giving her
the drug & I did not hear any change at all. I should do it again
today.. it's a little difficult since when I put my ear on her she
tends to purr! I also don't even know if 144 is an acceptable rate for
her or if I should be worried... well, we are working up to 1/2 tab per
day & still not there yet; hopefully that will do the trick.

Lacy, Abby & Melissa

--- In feline-heart@y..., "cessna7391" <cessna7391@y...> wrote:
> Just a quick reply, but with regards to counting the heart rate at
> the time of giving her Atentolol. Drugs go up in concentration in
> the blood depending on their biologic half life. I am not sure what
> the half life is for this drug but most of them are on the order of
> a few hours. So when you give the cat the drug initially, the
> amount in the blood goes up until reaching some equilibrium. From
> there is slowly goes down in concentration. Measuring the heart
> rate from hour to hour, you will probably not be able to detect much
> difference aside from what normally would be there. If you were to
> do the same and measure the heart rate say tonight and then measure
> it in 2 days, you certainly would notice a difference. The key is,
> you would not want to do that due to the side effects.
• Hi Lacy, You might want to think about getting a stethescope...you can get a reasonably priced one (15.00) or so from many pet stores and online med
Message 5 of 12 , Dec 3, 2002
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Hi Lacy,

You might want to think about getting a stethescope...you can get a
reasonably priced one (15.00) or so from many pet stores and online
med stores...it's a bit tricky to use, with all the purring
especially...I used to wait till Muffin was asleep and do it then. My
vet also wanted me to count and record his respiration rate, which was
a lot easier to do.

Muffin's rate was between 140 and 160 when he went on the
Atenelol...afterwards (and it took several weeks of him being on 1/4
tab per day before we saw a change) it went down to between 120 and
130 usually, though sometimes it would go into the 1teens...which the
vet did not want to see happening too much...she liked between 120 and
130 for him. He was 18 yrs. old and weighed about 11.75#...if that
helps. What was more impressive was that he was having dropped beats
(several in a minute) and after the Atenelol, his rhythm got real
regular and the skipped beats really became more scarce...like maybe
one in 15 minutes...the vet liked this a lot.

Good luck!

Sally

--- In feline-heart@y..., "mereminne" <mereminne@m...> wrote:
> Thank you very much for writing.. I'm still a little confused about
> this. I measured her heart rate before, & 2 hours after, giving her
> the drug & I did not hear any change at all. I should do it again
> today.. it's a little difficult since when I put my ear on her she
> tends to purr! I also don't even know if 144 is an acceptable rate
for
> her or if I should be worried... well, we are working up to 1/2 tab
per
> day & still not there yet; hopefully that will do the trick.
>
> Lacy, Abby & Melissa
>
> --- In feline-heart@y..., "cessna7391" <cessna7391@y...> wrote:
> > Just a quick reply, but with regards to counting the heart rate at
> > the time of giving her Atentolol. Drugs go up in concentration in
> > the blood depending on their biologic half life. I am not sure
what
> > the half life is for this drug but most of them are on the order
of
> > a few hours. So when you give the cat the drug initially, the
> > amount in the blood goes up until reaching some equilibrium. From
> > there is slowly goes down in concentration. Measuring the heart
> > rate from hour to hour, you will probably not be able to detect
much
> > difference aside from what normally would be there. If you were
to
> > do the same and measure the heart rate say tonight and then
measure
> > it in 2 days, you certainly would notice a difference. The key
is,
> > you would not want to do that due to the side effects.
• thanks, Lacy! I ve actually been there before, but only for emergencies - for regular check-ups, I ve brought my cats to a few different places. I agree with
Message 6 of 12 , Dec 4, 2002
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thanks, Lacy!
I've actually been there before, but only for emergencies - for
regular check-ups, I've brought my cats to a few different places. I
agree with you that it is an amazing, state-of-the-art facility (but
I also agree that it's very big and slow, which is why I've always
gone elsewhere for "regular" visits). I think I will bring Pacino
there for a 2nd opinion - I have found that the vets there are
wonderful and caring (even if the other staff is not always the
warmest).

I think you are probably doing the best for Abby - when it's
something serious, my understanding is that AMC is really the best
bet. Best wishes and hugs for Abby, and thanks for the quick
response!
-Shelly
--- In feline-heart@y..., "mereminne" <mereminne@m...> wrote:
> Hi Shelly,
>
> Since August, I have been taking Abby to the Animal Medical Center
at
> 62nd and York Avenue in Manhattan. Our cardiologist is Betsy
Bond. I
> had never taken my girls to the AMC but it was recommended highly
when
> Abby got VAS cancer and I've since learned it's a "state of the
art"
> teaching facility. I'm hoping I'm doing the best I can for Abby.
It's
> also a 24-hour facility. It can be a little frustrating as it's a
> large hospital so you sometimes have to wait a long time in the
waiting
> room & make sure to keep track of things yourself -- but as I said,
> they are supposedly a top-notch facility so if you're looking for a
> second opinion it might be a good bet.
>
> take care,
> Lacy, Abby & Melissa
>
>
>
>
>
> --- In feline-heart@y..., "targa66" <sgorove@g...> wrote:
> > hi Lacy (and Abby & Melissa) -
> >
> > welcome to the group ... I'm sorry I don't have answers to your
> > questions (but it looks like others have been helpful). If you
don't
> > mind my asking - do you have a cardiologist that you have been
happy
> > with in the NYC metro area? I need a 2nd opinion on my Pacino
(low
> > grade heart murmur; no evidence of HCM found yet).
> >
> > I appreciate any recommendations, and I truly hope Abby feels
better
> > soon. (I can sympathize with your situation - I lost my Targa-
cat to
> > a saddle thrombis in August, and am now very anxious about
Pacino.)
> > My thoughts are with you, Abby and Melissa.
> >
> > -Shelly
> >
• Thank you Sally for recommending a stethoscope, I am going to get one soon. I ve listened to Abby s heart a couple more times (using a second hand too) and it
Message 7 of 12 , Dec 5, 2002
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Thank you Sally for recommending a stethoscope, I am going to get one
soon. I've listened to Abby's heart a couple more times (using a
second hand too) and it seems to come out regularly to 144 even though
I'm increasing her Atenolol. We are not quite up to 1/2 tab yet -- but
I am already confused, because the vet thought the Atenolol from the
night before had worn off by the time she saw Abby around 12 noon,
that's why she recommended increasing the dosage from 1/4 to 1/2. But
that night Abby's HR was the same before & 2 hours after the Atenolol &
it so far seems to stay 144 before & after even though I'm increasing
the dose. I guess if it doesn't change by the time we get up to 1/2
it's time for another call to the cardiologist... if not before.

Thanks again -
Lacy, Abby & Melissa
• Pharmacology of Atenolol. It is not very soluable in water but onlyb slihtly so. Which means that is slowly absorbs through your cats digestive tract into
Message 8 of 12 , Dec 5, 2002
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Pharmacology of Atenolol. It is not very soluable in water but
onlyb slihtly so. Which means that is slowly absorbs through your
cats digestive tract into its blood stream. It does not all go in
at once. From there, the time it takes for half of it to be
digested is 6 to 8 hours with the drug reaching peak plasma
concentration in 2 to 4 hours. The effect of the drug on the heart
is usually on the order of 24 hours.
The take home message is that if you gave your cat a pill last
night, by noon the next day, the effect of it has not worn off.
--- In feline-heart@y..., "mereminne" <mereminne@m...> wrote:
> Thank you Sally for recommending a stethoscope, I am going to get
one
> soon. I've listened to Abby's heart a couple more times (using a
> second hand too) and it seems to come out regularly to 144 even
though
> I'm increasing her Atenolol. We are not quite up to 1/2 tab yet --
but
> I am already confused, because the vet thought the Atenolol from
the
> night before had worn off by the time she saw Abby around 12 noon,
> that's why she recommended increasing the dosage from 1/4 to 1/2.
But
> that night Abby's HR was the same before & 2 hours after the
Atenolol &
> it so far seems to stay 144 before & after even though I'm
increasing
> the dose. I guess if it doesn't change by the time we get up to
1/2
> it's time for another call to the cardiologist... if not before.
>
> Thanks again -
> Lacy, Abby & Melissa
• Hello cessna, Thank you, that helps explain things some. It also causes me to worry a bit about a problem I had thought I was avoiding. I give Abby psyllium
Message 9 of 12 , Dec 5, 2002
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Hello cessna,

Thank you, that helps explain things some. It also causes me to worry
a bit about a problem I had thought I was avoiding. I give Abby
psyllium husks for her digestion & she really needs the help -- I used
to give them to her in her morning & evening meals, because without
them she gets terrible constipation/hairballs etc.. When she started
Atenolol I heard that psyllium "binds" Atenolol (in the digestive
tract, I believe) & keeps it from being effective, and an herbalist
told me to make sure I gave the Atenolol 6 or more hours after the
psyllium. So, I've only been giving the psyllium at breakfast ever
since then, and I give the Atenolol around 12 or 1 at night. I hope I
have not been blocking the effects of the Atenolol somehow anyway, if
it takes that long to be digested.

The thing is, it doesn't seem to be slowing down her HR so far. But I
hope it will, we're doing about 1/3 tab now & I'll try to have it up to
1/2 by early next week.

Lacy, Abby & Melissa

--- In feline-heart@y..., "cessna7391" <cessna7391@y...> wrote:
> Pharmacology of Atenolol. It is not very soluable in water but
> onlyb slihtly so. Which means that is slowly absorbs through your
> cats digestive tract into its blood stream. It does not all go in
> at once. From there, the time it takes for half of it to be
> digested is 6 to 8 hours with the drug reaching peak plasma
> concentration in 2 to 4 hours. The effect of the drug on the heart
> is usually on the order of 24 hours.
> The take home message is that if you gave your cat a pill last
> night, by noon the next day, the effect of it has not worn off.
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