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Keywords:

  • Advanced ECG;
  • Cardiac disease;
  • Dog;
  • Screening

Background

Multiple advanced resting ECG (A-ECG) techniques have improved the diagnostic or prognostic value of ECG in detecting human cardiac diseases even before onset of clinical signs or changes in conventional ECG.

Objective

To determine which A-ECG parameters, derived from 12-lead A-ECG recordings, change with severity of mitral regurgitation (MR) caused by myxomatous mitral valve disease (MMVD) in Cavalier King Charles Spaniels (CKCSs) in sinus rhythm.

Animals

Seventy-six privately owned CKCSs.

Methods

Dogs were prospectively divided into 5 groups according to the degree of MR (estimated by color Doppler mapping as the percentage of the left atrial area affected by the MR jet) and presence of clinical signs. High fidelity approximately 5-minute 12-lead ECG recordings were evaluated using custom software to calculate multiple conventional and A-ECG parameters.

Results

Nineteen of 76 ECG parameters were significantly different (< .05) across the 5 dog groups. A 4-parameter model that incorporated results from 1 parameter of heart rate variability, 2 parameters of QT variability, and 1 parameter of QRS amplitude was identified that explained 82.4% of the variance with a correlation coefficient (R) of 0.60 (< .01). When age or murmur grade was included in the statistical model the prediction value further increased the R to 0.74 and 0.85 (< .01), respectively.

Conclusion

In CKCSs with sinus rhythm, 4 selected A-ECG parameters further improve prediction of MR jet severity beyond age and murmur grade, although the predictive increment in this study probably is not sufficient to warrant utilization in clinical veterinary practice.