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Can J Vet Res. 1997 Jul;61(3):227-31.

Magnesium status and the effect of magnesium supplementation in feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

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  • 1Department of Medicine, Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine, North Grafton, Massachussetts 01536, USA.


Magnesium deficiency has been associated with the development of cardiovascular disease in several species. Cats may be predisposed to alterations in magnesium status because of recent changes in the composition of commercial feline diets. The purposes of this study were 1) to examine the dietary history of cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), 2) to study magnesium status of cats with HCM compared to normal cats, and 3) to determine the effects of magnesium supplementation in cats with HCM. In part 1 of the study, diets of 65 cats with HCM were examined retrospectively. Forty of the 45 cats for which diets could be determined (89%) ate a diet designed to be magnesium-restricted and/or to produce an acidic urine. In part 2 of the study, 10 cats with HCM were compared to 10 healthy control cats for serum creatinine and magnesium; urine creatinine and magnesium, urine specific gravity and pH, and fractional excretion of magnesium. Urine creatinine and specific gravity were higher in control cats than in cats with HCM. No other differences were found between the 2 groups. In part 3, cats with HCM were supplemented with either 210 mg magnesium chloride (n = 15) or 210 mg lactose (n = 15) for 12 wk. No differences between the 2 groups were found for changes in either magnesium status or echocardiographic parameters. However, the 30 cats with HCM, as a group, did show significant improvements in measures of cardiac hypertrophy over the 12-week period. This was likely the result of treatment with other medications, rather than the magnesium supplementation. The results of this study suggest that cats with HCM are likely to be fed magnesium-restricted diets, but that they do not appear to have altered magnesium status compared to healthy controls.

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