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Heart failure is common in diabetic cats: findings from a retrospective case-controlled study in first-opinion practice

Little, C.J.L. and Gettinby, G. (2008) Heart failure is common in diabetic cats: findings from a retrospective case-controlled study in first-opinion practice. Journal of Small Animal Practice, 49 (1). pp. 17-25. ISSN 0022-4510

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Abstract

Diabetes mellitus is common in the cat and the prevalence of this condition appears to be increasing (Peterson 1998, Rand and Marshall 2004, Rand and others 2004). The prognosis for cats with diabetes mellitus in first opinion practice has received little attention in the literature; few data indicate why diabetic cats die. Death in people with diabetes is overwhelmingly because of cardiovascular disease (Grundy and others 1999, Almdal and others 2004, Bell 2004, Bertoni and others 2004, Nichols and others 2004). Experimental induction of diabetes mellitus in various laboratory mammals also causes cardiovascular disease and heart failure so that the prevalence of cardiac disease and failure in diabetic cats seemed worthy of examination. The purpose of this study was to examine the prognosis and cause of death for a cohort of consecutive cases of feline diabetes mellitus diagnosed in a first opinion veterinary practice, and to compare these with control cats matched for age, breed and sex.