What is Aortic stenosis?
This is an inherited condition in which a vessel leading from the left side of the heart is narrowed.
How does my dog get Aortic Stenosis?
As a hereditary condition, it develops shortly after birth and clinical signs may not develop for awhile. In cats, it may develop as a result of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy and the muscular charges that the heart goes through. Non-hereditary causes of aortic stenosis are rare in dogs.
How do I know if my dog has Aortic Stenosis?
You may not know until your dog starts to show clinical signs. Before signs arise, your veterinarian may note a significant and specifically located heart murmur. As the heart is asked to work harder to overcome the abnormality, signs of congestive heart failure will develop: difficulty breathing, increased respiratory rate, and moist sounding lung sounds. Additionally, findings may include fainting or sudden death. Your veterinarian is the only one that can identify aortic stenosis. Radiographs, EKG and ultrasound may all be used to make a correct diagnosis.
What can I do about Aortic Stenosis?
Once diagnosed treatment options vary. Surgery, although possible, is rarely done in dogs. Medial management will be determined by the severity of the signs noted. Medications are directed to slow the progression or development of heart failure. Activity must be restricted since fainting and sudden death can occur with excess exertion. Monitoring of progression via ultrasound is helpful. Mildly effected dogs will live a full and normal life. Severely affected dogs are at risk for congestive heart failure and have a grave prognosis.
Is there anything I can do to prevent my dog from getting Aortic Stenosis?
Are there certain breeds that get Aortic Stenosis more often?
Newfoundland, German shepherd, Golden Retriever, Rotweiller, Boxer, Samoyed, English bulldog, Great Dane.