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My Experience w/ Propanolol, Atenolol, & Diltiazem

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  • joe.weissmann@uc.edu
    My Tigger initially was put on Propanolol after a severe case of CHF (conjestive heart failure) when he was 18 months old. Propanolol wiped him out...lethargic
    Message 1 of 24 , Nov 1, 2000
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      My Tigger initially was put on Propanolol after a severe case of CHF
      (conjestive heart failure) when he was 18 months old. Propanolol wiped
      him out...lethargic wouldn't move...trouble breathing, etc. Found out
      this drug is a non-selective beta blocker and can cause adverse
      reactions including difficulty in breathing but it is the most
      powerful beta blocker at a vet's disposal. After a week we then
      switched him to Atenolol, a selective beta blocker, and he improved
      dramatically. Tigger was almost back to himself with just a little
      less stamina then before.
      Tigger was taking a combination of Atenolol, Vasotec, and the baby
      aspirin and was doing fine when on his semi-annual exam the vet
      discovered moderate arrythmia and doubled his dosage of Vasotec &
      Atenolol. He was tolerating this increased dosage pretty well for
      about a month when one night his heart threw a clot that paralyzed his
      rear legs. Fortunately it was only a partial blockage and within a
      week he was back on his feet and could walk around. I think it may
      have only been a partial blockage due to the baby aspirin he's been
      taking.
      To make a long story short(er), after consulting w/ several people
      on the web and doing a lot of research, I convinced the vet to take
      him off the Atenolol and put him on Diltiazem instead. She
      begrudgingly did so, but only for a week and if that didn't work he
      was going back on Atenolol/Propanolol or I would have to find a new
      specialist. After a week he some seemed no worse than before but he
      still had the arrhythmia. We decided to keep him on the Diltiazem and
      he's been doing great for the last 6 months.
      My feelings are that if your cat has not been in CHF then the beta
      blockers (Propanolol/Atenolol) can keep HCM in check but if your cat
      has had CHF episode, then a calcium channel blocker(Diltiazem) is the
      better choice. Diltiazem also has some anti-clotting properties which
      is good thing, while the beta blockers can restrict blood vessels
      which is a bad thing if clot is thrown. I will have to say that beta
      blockers (Propanolol and to a lesser extent Atenolol) are much better
      at treating arrhythmia which is a major cause of clot formation.

      - Joe Weissmann
    • Voula Augerinos
      Hi Joe, thank you for your message. I think I read somewhere that beta blockers should be used with caution in CHF (congestive heart failure). I will look at
      Message 2 of 24 , Nov 1, 2000
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        Hi Joe,
        thank you for your message. I think I read somewhere that beta
        blockers should be used with caution in CHF (congestive heart failure). I
        will look at the site and write again. I think it said that they can worsen
        heart failure.

        > My feelings are that if your cat has not been in CHF then the beta
        > blockers (Propanolol/Atenolol) can keep HCM in check but if your cat
        > has had CHF episode, then a calcium channel blocker(Diltiazem) is the
        > better choice.

        Pebbles has not been in CHF.

        > Diltiazem also has some anti-clotting properties which
        > is good thing, while the beta blockers can restrict blood vessels
        > which is a bad thing if clot is thrown.

        That is interesting. I will look into this and ask the vet.

        > I will have to say that beta
        > blockers (Propanolol and to a lesser extent Atenolol) are much better
        > at treating arrhythmia which is a major cause of clot formation.

        For Pebbles the specialist said he wanted to lower her heart rate and
        hopefully that would help the heart.
        I am still learning about heart disease in cats. I don't know very
        much so I am sorry if I can't explain myself too well.

        Love, Voula and Pebbles and Lucy and my Beautiful Angel Sachie.
      • Mike & Linda Irrgang (Now in Jamaica!)
        Voula, I ll be praying for you and Pebbles in my thoughts and prayers. Pumpkin, Max and Linda ... From: Voula Augerinos [mailto:catwoman1@iprimus.com.au] Sent:
        Message 3 of 24 , Nov 3, 2000
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          Voula,
          I'll be praying for you and Pebbles in my thoughts and prayers.

          Pumpkin, Max and Linda
          -----Original Message-----
          From: Voula Augerinos [mailto:catwoman1@...]
          Sent: Thursday, October 19, 2000 10:38 PM
          To: feline-heart@egroups.com
          Subject: Re: [feline-heart] Re: Diltiazem--Voula


          Hi there Jeanne,
          another positive and hopeful message. Thank you. And thank you for
          saying that the anxiety eases. Yes I have noticed Pebbles has been a bit
          less active lately. I also thought that because over the past few months
          before Sachie died, that it was because Sachie was sick, because she used
          to get Pebbles to play with her. I think that is true, because before
          Pebbles would tear around a million miles an hour chasing Sachie. But I
          also think that her heart could be a factor too. Well everyone, I am soon
          to give Pebbles her first tablet (one quarter of a propranolol). Wish us
          well. I think Pebbles will be okay, but I am going to need something
          myself!
          Love, Voula and Pebbles and my Beautiful Angel Sachie.

          ----------
          > From: Jeanne Warner <jwarner310@...>
          > To: feline-heart@egroups.com
          > Subject: [feline-heart] Re: Diltiazem--Voula
          > Date: Friday, 20 October , 2000 12:28 PM
          >
          > Hi!
          > I too have a cat, Dom, who is 5 years old and was diagnosed with HCM
          > almost 1 year ago. He takes Diltiazem and Enalarpril. We did try baby
          > aspirin for him but had to discontinue it because it caused him to
          > throw up most every day. He has had 2 ultrasounds so far and the
          > second 1 showed that there has been no farther deterioration and his
          > heart rate was lower. The Enlarpril was added after the second
          > ultrasound and we will return for the next ultrasound in January. I
          > will be anxious to see if there have been any changes. We do see our
          > regular vet in between the cardiologist check ups. She did a chem
          > profile to check for renal function and it was fine. So, all has been
          > going very well for Dom since his diagnosis. We have noticed that he
          > became alot more active after being on the meds. He stated running
          > and jumping again. Cardiologist says it is because he feels better.
          >
          > We all live with the fear of blood clots, kidney problems etc. but it
          > does become less stressful as the time goes by. At first, I just
          > watched him waiting for something bad to happen but now we know that
          > we are doing everything we can for him and that is all that we can
          > do. Of course this is easier to say when he has been doing so well.
          > It does help if you have a good vet that you trust and a good
          > cardiologist. Dom and I are lucky to have both!
          >
          > Good luck to you and Pebbles,
          > Jeanne & Dom
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > --- In feline-heart@egroups.com, "Jonathan Rosenberg" <jr40@r...>
          > wrote:
          > > > -----Original Message-----
          > > > From: Melinda Bruno [mailto:brunobaby@a...]
          > > > Sent: Thursday, October 19, 2000 10:54 AM
          > > > To: feline-heart@egroups.com
          > > > Subject: [feline-heart] Re: Diltiazem--Voula
          > >
          > > > The cardiologist recommended enalapril (Vasotec), which is an ACE
          > > > Inhibitor.
          > >
          > > This is the same drug as enacard, which is what Lynx takes.
          > >
          > > > If you've heard that this drug is not recommended for kidney
          > > > patients, it's because it "cuts" the communication between
          > > > the heart and the kidneys. Meaning that the kidneys yell "more
          > > > blood!" and the heart doesn't hear them. This means less work
          > > > for the heart, which is good for a heart patient, but could be
          > > > bad for the kidneys.
          > >
          > > I asked our vet about this a few weeks agio. She said that when
          > enalapril
          > > was first introduced, this was everyone's fear. But she said that
          > the
          > > latest research had shown that the drug actually appears to be less
          > > troublesome for the kidneys than ohter treatments.
          > >
          > > Just another data point ...
          > >
          > > > --Melinda and Pongo
          > >
          > > --
          > > JR
          > > & Tabby (RB), Licorice, Tigger, Lynx
          >
          >
          >
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          >


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