Cardiogenic pulmonary edema in cats: symptoms, cause, treatment and prevention

Cardiogenic Pulmonary Edema In Cats: Symptoms, Cause, Treatment And Prevention

Cardiogenic pulmonary edema is a vital emergency. At the slightest symptom that could lead one to suspect this complication of heart disease, the master of the cat must absolutely do everything possible to ensure that the care of his animal is imminent. Let’s see what are the symptoms to watch out for and the cause of this very serious edema, take stock of the possible treatment and review the means to prevent health problems that expose the cat to this type of edema.

Cardiogenic Pulmonary Edema: Symptoms In Cats

The main clinical manifestations of pulmonary edema of cardiac origin appear when a large amount of liquid is located in the cat’s lungs, hence the urgency of the situation. These are the following signs:

    • Acceleration of breathing due to lack of oxygen,
    • Breathing difficulties that sometimes force the cat to breathe by opening its mouth because the inflation and deflation of its lungs is insufficient due to the presence of liquid,
    • A cough (which is however much rarer in cats than in dogs).

I’ appearance of these symptoms is quite brutal and generates great stress in both the animal and its master. Some cats have been showing this type of symptom for some time, but if they have the habit of prostrating themselves in a corner as soon as they are sick, it is more difficult for the breeder to spot these very serious manifestations.

Cardiogenic Pulmonary Edema In Cats: The Cause

This term refers to the presence of fluid inside cat’s lungs. Clear and limpid, it has an aspect quite close to that of water. This liquid comes from the blood vessels and is projected into the pulmonary alveoli due to an increase in the pressure inside the heart (this is the reason why we speak of intracardiac pressure), since the lungs and heart muscle are interconnected by these vessels.

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This pulmonary edema is not a disease in itself, but rather the complication of left heart failure or another serious heart problem. Its origin is therefore cardiogenic.

There is no no racial predisposition to this type of serious problem. Any cat, male or female, young or old, can one day suffer from heart failure. However, the Ragdoll, the Maine Coon, the Sphynx, the Rex and some other feline breeds are more prone to certain cardiomyopathies whose origin is genetic.

For information, a cat can be a victim of other types of pulmonary edema, but of different origins. Some follow poisoning, others are due to a neurological problem for example. But in these different cases, it is not cardiogenic oedema.

Cardiogenic Pulmonary Oedema: Treatment Of The Cat

As soon as cardiogenic pulmonary edema is diagnosed, the veterinarian sets up a care protocol which may be based on:

    • Hospitalization of the animal,
    • Oxygenation of the cat,
    • The injection of diuretics allowing the rather rapid elimination of the water contained in the lungs,
    • Treatment of heart disease causing pulmonary oedema.

Drug treatment prescribed by the veterinarian should be administered for life to the animal so that its heart can function a little better. However, he will never be able to return to his normal state despite the medication. In addition, regular follow-up of the cat is essential thereafter because it is not immune to repeat pulmonary edema of cardiac origin.

Through x-rays, the veterinarian will regularly monitor the condition of his little patient’s lungs. If they appear black in the picture, they contain air, which is normal. On the other hand, if they appear white, it is because they are again filled with liquid. We insist on the importance of having your cat’s lungs checked with great regularity thereafter because in the event of a new beginning edema, the animal is taken care of very quickly, which can avoid its hospitalization.

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THE prognosis depends on the age of the heart disease causing the cardiogenic pulmonary oedema. The more it is dated, the more its form is unfortunately evolved. But with a increased veterinary supervision and one adequate treatmentthe cat can still live with heart disease for some time.

Cardiogenic pulmonary edema in cats: prevention

Preventing heart disease is essential to prevent your cat from one day falling victim to pulmonary edema of cardiac origin. There heart disease prevention (although these cannot always be avoided), goes through a feed perfectly balanced and physical activity sufficient on a daily basis. It is therefore necessary to be particularly vigilant with indoor cats who do not go out and therefore do not exert themselves enough. If they eat too much or don’t get high quality food, they are at risk of becoming obese. Obesity is one of the factors favoring cardiovascular diseases.

Finally, a cat should from the age of 2 or 3 months be followed by a veterinarian Then throughout his life. This is the best way to prevent many pathologies or to diagnose a health problem as early as possible. We can taking care of your cat’s health at a lower cost by subscribing to an insurance contract with a mutual company specializing in pets. In this way, the master can be reimbursed for expenses incurred (partially or totally) for consultations, hospitalization, surgeries, medicines, expensive examinations, preventive acts and many more.

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