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J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1992 Aug 15;201(4):613-8.

Risk factors, clinical signs, and survival in cats with a clinical diagnosis of idiopathic hypertrophic cardiomyopathy: 74 cases (1985-1989).

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Department of Companion Animal and Special Species Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, Raleigh 27606.


Population characteristics, risk factors, and survival characteristics were evaluated in 74 cats with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HC) seen at North Carolina State University veterinary teaching hospital from 1985 to 1989, and compared with 82 clinically normal cats. The mean (+/- SD) age of cats with HC was 6.5 (4.0) years. Neutered males were at significantly greater risk (odds ratio 3.1) than neutered females. Breed, body weight, or coat color were not determined to be risk factors for HC. Tricolor cats were significantly underrepresented, probably reflecting the male predisposition for HC and not a true risk reduction associated with coat color. Forty-one cats were without clinical signs of heart disease (murmur and/or gallop sound only), 24 were in congestive heart failure, and 9 had systemic arterial embolism, 3 of which had concomitant congestive heart failure. The median survival time for 61 cats with HC, for which survival information could be obtained and that were not euthanatized on day 1, was 732 days. Survival was not affected by age at diagnosis, breed, body weight, or sex. However, clinical signs were important in determining prognosis; cats with heart rates greater than 200 beats/min survived significantly longer (median survival greater than 1,830 days) than those with heart rates greater than or equal to 200 beats/min (median survival = 152 days). Cats without clinical signs (median survival greater than 1,830 days) survived longer than those with clinical signs, and cats in heart failure survived a median of 92 days, compared with 61 days for those with systemic arterial embolism. Analysis of survival revealed no significant difference between the 2 groups of cats with clinical signs; however, all cats with embolism and only 60% of cats with heart failure were dead 6 months after diagnosis.

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