I'm at the beginning of my cat's hypertrophic cardiomyopathy journey

nartyteek

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He's a 15yo male, and his mother, who I knew and fostered through pregnancy, was an oriental shorthair. I understand they can have these sorts of problems. He had no noticeable symptoms, and we only discovered this issue when he was being evaluated for an unrelated surgery. Essentially what I'm asking is, what does life look like for those of you with elderly HCM cats? I'm trusting my vet to come up with a treatment plan, but I don't benefit much from optimism. I find gritty realism soothing, I really do. If any of you have insights or anecdotes, please share. Thanks!
 

Boris Diamond

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I have had two cats with HCM. One, Boris, had to be put down before his fourth birthday. The other one, Diamond, had symptoms at about four years old, too. He has been under treatment for over four years and has shown no further symptoms. He is on Vetmedin, Enalapril and Furosimide. I'm not sure how much this helps, as both of mine were diagnosed at a relatively young age.
 
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nartyteek

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I have had two cats with HCM. One, Boris, had to be put down before his fourth birthday. The other one, Diamond, had symptoms at about four years old, too. He has been under treatment for over four years and has shown no further symptoms. He is on Vetmedin, Enalapril and Furosimide. I'm not sure how much this helps, as both of mine were diagnosed at a relatively young age.
I get what you're saying. One of the reasons I've been looking for information is that most people with elderly cats seem to get diagnosis way after symptoms appear (or after the cat is dead), or they get diagnosed at a young age, so he's a bit of an anomaly. I'll have something interesting to post to the site in a few years, if nothing else.
 

Antonio65

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My cat was diagnosed with HCM during an ultrasound cardio scan before a surgery for an unrelated problem.
She was 16 yo, I don't know how long she had been this way for, but she had a similar scan a few months earlier and nothing was found.
She didn't need any med or treatment for this, apart from being careful about stress and tiring activities.
 

Jem

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Our cat was 10 when diagnosed. He unfortunately was also in Congestive Heart Failure at the time of his diagnosis, and despite all our efforts with 7 different medications up to three times a day and 2 chest taps and second opinions with a cardiologist, a couple months later, he threw a clot and we had to put him down. His symptoms came on so fast....it was tough to watch. :(
 
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nartyteek

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Our cat was 10 when diagnosed. He unfortunately was also in Congestive Heart Failure at the time of his diagnosis, and despite all our efforts with 7 different medications up to three times a day and 2 chest taps and second opinions with a cardiologist, a couple months later, he threw a clot and we had to put him down. His symptoms came on so fast....it was tough to watch. :(
That sounds hard! I've had to do a few emergency euthanasias in my life, and they're always a nightmare. It still sounds like you put in a heroic effort, and I'm sorry you weren't rewarded for it. Thanks so much for sharing.
 
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nartyteek

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My cat was diagnosed with HCM during an ultrasound cardio scan before a surgery for an unrelated problem.
She was 16 yo, I don't know how long she had been this way for, but she had a similar scan a few months earlier and nothing was found.
She didn't need any med or treatment for this, apart from being careful about stress and tiring activities.
This is about how it's panning out for me so far, except my vet is recommending we do a single daily dose of blood thinner for now until he gets his follow-up in a few months. Which will be fun when he gets injured! He's very active and hurts himself sometimes because no one told him he's old and needs to slow down lol!
 

Antonio65

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This is about how it's panning out for me so far, except my vet is recommending we do a single daily dose of blood thinner for now until he gets his follow-up in a few months. Which will be fun when he gets injured! He's very active and hurts himself sometimes because no one told him he's old and needs to slow down lol!
So you fear that thinning his blood would put him in danger of bleeding if he gets injured? Have you checked his PT and PTT to see if they are in the normal range so that you can feel safer in thinning his blood just a bit?
 
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nartyteek

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So you fear that thinning his blood would put him in danger of bleeding if he gets injured? Have you checked his PT and PTT to see if they are in the normal range so that you can feel safer in thinning his blood just a bit?
I'm still playing phone-tag with the vet, but I'll bring that up when we talk. I've been rearranging my house a lot to deal with his senior lifestyle, but he still is a bit of a dumbass, so it is a concern. Neither are ideal, but if I have to choose, I'd rather have the clotting difficulties on the outside of the body than inside of the body, if you will.
 

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Neither are ideal, but if I have to choose, I'd rather have the clotting difficulties on the outside of the body than inside of the body, if you will.
I'm dealing with my cat which has a clotting issue, that is she has hemophilia, a clotting issue that prevents her blood from clotting normally. In the case of an injury, she could bleed longer than normal. As long as the injury is external something can be done, because we see what's going on. If the problem is inside, well...
So I know what you mean.
 
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nartyteek

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So we're going with 18mg of plavix, and also we're looking at ways of treating his joints to get his weight down after his recovery. I don't think I mentioned, but he'd somehow managed to break the thickest part of his hip, and that is what triggered all this evaluation. The vet said he usually treats an injury like that after the cats get hit by cars, and he's 100% indoors, so I have no idea. He's a wild boy, like I said! I don't have much else to report, luckily, but I want to thank everyone that's responded so far. I will report back once he starts taking his meds, and at his follow-up in a few months, but things are looking very boring! And for that, I'm thankful.
 

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Hi,
I have quite a bit of experience with my boy who has HCM.
He was very young and in active heart failure when we found out- April 2019.
They said he probably wont last longer than a few months because his hypertrophy is severe.... but hes still kicking.
He is on lasix, atenolol, and rivaroxaban (blood thinner xarelto) used to be on plavix
Dont worry about him not clotting etc
Theyve done plenty bloodwork on Louie and he doesnt have any issues clotting.
Its a scary road but there are things that can help them.
Try to find a cardiologist to make a good treatment plan and do an echocardiogram to give you more information.
 
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