or Connect
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Health › Heart Murmer
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Heart Murmer

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
i took my cat to the vet on Sunday after he was a bit out of sorts only to be told that he has a heart murmur. This is un-related to the problem at the moment but I have been advised to let him see a cardiologist (costing £400).

has anyone else come across this b4? I've heard that a lot of cats live their lives healthily wihtout ever knowing about this.

i'm worried that if I don't get this investigated further he may be in trouble
post #2 of 14
Ain't it a kick in the pants. You bring a perfectly healthy cat to the vet, to be told he isn't as healthy as you thought! Drops the world out from under you!

Did the vet tell you what level the murmur is? They're rated on a scale of 1-6. 1 is a minor murmur, 6 can be felt with your hand. Cats with a level 1 murmur can live years with no problems.

There are several threads in the health forum with great info.
post #3 of 14
Well I too have a cat with a heart murmur. My last cat Smokey developed one after the age of 12 I think & I was told that older age on-set heart murmurs are not uncommon & don't necessarily mean anything bad. Smokey lived to be 17 & her heart was never a problem, it was her CRF that was a problem. My boy Levi has a low grade murmur (2) & he is about 8 months old now. My vet said that some kittens are born with a murmur that seems to "Fix" itself as they grow. She did say that with out him seeing a cardiologist there is no way to know exactly what is wrong & so it can't be treated. Unfortunatly there is only 1 cardiologist in my state & it's about an hour & a half drive. I've decided to wait & see what she says about his heart at his next appointment (he'll be over a year by then) in the hope it will have gotten better, and if it hasn't I will then figure out a way to pay for the work up. So I would say going to the cardiologist would depend on the level of the murmur & the age of the cat. If you trust your vet & he or she strongly recommends it, I would probably do it.
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
I take Jasper back to the vet tomorrow for another check. I will ask about the severity (or estimated) and if it is very significant then I will definately get the cardiologist involved. Unfortunately, the bill we've run up already is about £200!!!

I feel awful but I have this real gut feeling about vets that they're out to make as much money as possible. I would obviously never compromise the health of my cats but I want to know all the facts first b4 i decide on this appointment.

1. What if it's minor, he will live wihtout ever having any repurcussions....is it worth putting him through this?
2. What if I'd never known about it?
3. What if it is really bad news and nothing can be done? I would rather not know and let him live his life.

A few of my friends / colleagues have cats and other animals with murmurs and they either did nothing about it and the animals are reaching 9/10 yrs of age with no ill health.....or they went through this expensive procedure only to find that the only options were drugs (with lots of side effects that affected quality of life) or surgery (of which the risks were so great for the anaesthetic that they were advised not to do it anyway)

I feel like I'm being asked to play God here

I'll update you tomorrow!
post #5 of 14
geeze that sounds like a bit overkill to send him to a cardiologist!

what rating did the vet give the murmer? here in canada they have a scale of 1 to 5, 5 being more serious.

one of my cats had a murmer that was like a 2 or so and it wasnt really anything to worry about. he was also expected to grow out of it.

he's still going strong... 8 months later
post #6 of 14
I think the reason a vet may recommend a cardiologist is that you can't really tell anything by listening to the murmur. From everything I've read on the internet some very quiet murmurs can be due to a serious problem. I guess each person has to decide what's best for them & for their cat. When my first cat developed a murmur the vet basicly said you could schedule her for a cardiologist, but a murmur is not supprising due to her age (at the time she was somewhere between 10 - 12) & that is was a mild murmur. With my little guy Levi first they did a heart worm test to make sure he didn't have that. When it came back negative, I got differnt opinons from 2 differnt vets at the clinic I go to. One felt that I should have taken him before he was nuetered because there was no way of knowing what might be wrong & it would give them a better idea before they put him under anestetic. The other vet (who actually saw him)said that neuturing was super important & that it was such a quick proceedure she wouldn't worry about it. Unfortunatly unless you have a vet you really trust it's hard to know what to do. Keep us updated.
post #7 of 14
Thread Starter 
thanks for all your advice. I'm going to ask the vet today what his recommendation is and what the possible outcomes are. Jasper is about 3 yrs old (rough estimation as we took him in off the streets as he was homeless) which means that he definately won't grow out of it and it's not due to old age - which, in itself, isn't good really

the vet is hoping that the virus he had (the original reason we took him) was what was causing this problem and that it has gone away. i have a gut feeling that this won't be the case but i'm keeping my fingers crossed

i'll let you all know after the visit today
post #8 of 14
fingers crossed.
I have a mean ole cat that is about 12 now and only found out last year she has a murmur. New vet for cheaper injections! My lot have been to numerous vets over the years and no one picked it up before or perhaps it wasnt there before, who knows. I think perhaps a cardiologist is a bit heavy at this point. It always makes you feel as if they are taking money off you for no good reason though doesnt it as you haveno way of checking without spending even more money. Then you feel really cheap for not spending it cos you love your pet! No win situation I'm afraid.
good luck
post #9 of 14
did your cat have a fever with the virus she had? Sometimes a fever causes a heart murmur...and then it goes away after they are well again...i hope this is it...
post #10 of 14
Hope all goes well with the vet.

My eldest cat Sphinx (Approximately 17-18 years old) was diagnosed with a heart murmur last year and he's been with us for almost a year now (He was diagnosed about 8 months after we adopted him from the local pound - before that he didn't have one - It'll be 2 years in June since we adopted him).

I'm not sure of the degree yet (I'll try to find out from the vet when he goes back in) but we are keeping tabs of it to see if it gets any worse. They want to have him go to a cardiologist but they are unsure if he will behave long enough for the tests (He hates to be handled for more than a few minutes).
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
well the virus didn't cause the murmur it's still there, so we've decided to go with the (very expensive) cardiology exam, he's booked for next Thursday. I feel a bit better now after a long chat with the vet as the potential treatments (beta blockers or others) should only cost (max) £20 per month.

My heart strings were very strained last night and we decided to go ahead with this as we've got the little fella this far (rescued off the streets eating out of bins) so we can't give up on him now. I don't know how I would cope with the guilt anyway of he drops down dead and I've done nothing (knowingly) about this.

I'll let you know how the ECG / ultrasound turns out after the appointment.

p.s. i'm a bit worried about the risk of putting him under to do this procedure.....does anyone know, the vet didn't mention this last night
post #12 of 14
Cats usually aren't sedated for ultrasounds or EKG's unless they are extremely agressive and won't let the staff hold them still. Sedation changes the results of an ultrasound; the Dr. wants to see how the heart functions under natural conditions. Getting the test done really is useful, it lets the vet know where the problem is, and if it requires any medications, etc.
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
well, there's good and bad news .....

the bad news is that we had to take him to the vets again on Tuesday to find that he has FIV the temperature had crept back despite anti-biotics and the vet thought that this was very odd so carried out a blood test....i'm gutted....i had him tested before we took him into the house because we have another cat and it came back clear. 3 weeks after this test, we had to take him in to have a nasty abcess drained (resulting from a bite) and he hasn't been out in the wilderness since this....so this is what must have infected him. how's that for bad luck?
obviously, i am anxious about jasmine (other puddy) and I'm toying with the idea of whether to get her tested or not. although they do fight occasionally, i've never witnessed anything particularly vicious so i think she may be ok

on a brighter note (not that my credit card thinks it's bright at £300) the ultrasound revealed no real cause for concern.....he's got a congenital valve problem which hasn't altered his heart so he should be ok with this

now to top it all off the little fella is really itchy and sore where they shaved him to do the procedure and is feeling particularly grumpy
post #14 of 14
could your cat be anemic? anemia can cause heart murmers. I had 2 kittens, now almost a year old that were diagnosed with this as kittens. My vet told me that I should have them put to sleep. I just didn't feel good about the diagnosis he has given me so I came home and began researching heart murmers in felines. To my suprise heart murmers can be caused by anemia. Well I went back to the vet, he checked their iron levels and sure enough they were very anemic. So she gave me Pet tinic. It is just a supplement with b vitamins. After giving them this 2x's a day for about 3 or 4 days the murumer was gone!! I continued this for a couple of weeks. We have had no problem since. I believe the reason they became anemic is because the quailty of the kitten food that I was feeding them wasn't good. After all of the research I found out how bad some foods are for cats. So I put them on Nutro's Natural Choice for kittens. They loved it. they became so healty and beautiful.

Well I hope this helps!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Cat Health
TheCatSite.com › Forums › Our Feline Companions › Cat Health › Heart Murmer