Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM), a disease in which the heart muscle becomes abnormally thick, is the most common form of acquired heart disease in cats. Unfortunately, cats with HCM are predisposed to feline arterial thromboembolism (FATE), where abnormal blood clot formation obstructs blood flow to parts of the body. Cats with HCM and FATE usually have poor blood flow to their hind legs, which results in paralysis and severe pain. These cats are often euthanized due to poor quality of life and limited treatment options. Despite the clinical significance of FATE associated with HCM, the underlying factors that predispose cats with HCM to FATE are poorly understood.
The primary aim of this proposed study is to determine whether cats with HCM have evidence of hypercoagulability, which is the tendency for blood to clot excessively. Hypercoagulability will be determined using a blood test called thromboelastography (TEG). A secondary aim is to determine whether cats with more advanced HCM that have heart chamber enlargement have similar TEG parameters as cats with HCM that do not have heart chamber enlargement. These findings can significantly impact diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of FATE.