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Compendium December 2008 (Vol 30, No 12)

Reading Room — Cardiovascular Disease in Small Animal Medicine

by R. Dennis Heald, DVM, DACVIM, Elizabeth Welles, DVM, PhD, DACVP, Tricia Salazar, MS, DVM

    Title: Cardiovascular Disease in Small Animal Medicine

    Author: Wendy A. Ware

    Publisher: Manson Publishing Ltd.

    Year: 2007

    Pages: 396

    ISBN: 978-1-84076-076-7

    Dr. Ware has created a visual learning experience, using many figures and tables to enhance concise summaries of information about cardiovascular diseases, diagnostic tools, and approaches to disease management.

    Dr. Ware's stated goal for this book is to provide a broad overview of small animal cardiovascular medicine that will also serve as a practical clinical reference for general veterinary practitioners and students. To accomplish her task, she has created a visual learning experience, using more than 570 figures (many in color) and 65 tables to enhance her concise summaries of information about cardiovascular diseases, diagnostic tools, and approaches to disease management.

    The first of the book's three sections reviews the normal cardiovascular system and function and describes evaluation and testing techniques, including radiography, electrocardiography, and echocardiography. The second section focuses on common conditions and their presentation, differential diagnosis, and management. Chapters cover murmurs and abnormal heart sounds, cardiomegaly, cough, respiratory problems, jugular vein and abdominal distention, edema, syncope, thromboembolic disease, heart failure, and arrhythmias.

    The final section provides more detailed information about specific diseases, organized anatomically. The chapter on congenital conditions covers an extensive variety of cardiac defects, including subaortic/pulmonic stenosis, patent ductus arteriosus, ventricular and atrial septal defects, pulmonary hypertension, and other anomalies. A chapter on acquired valve diseases addresses both degenerative and infectious entities. There are separate chapters on canine and feline myocardial diseases, each of which deals with various types of cardiomyopathy, myocarditis, and other conditions. The remaining chapters consider pericardial diseases, cardiac tumors, pulmonary hypertension, heartworm disease, and systemic hypertension.

    Dr. Ware concedes that this structure necessarily lends itself to repetition, which she tries to minimize by cross-referencing. This presentation may require the reader to flip back and forth between sections when seeking information. Despite these limitations, the chapters are organized into concise sections for easy location of specific topics, and the tables summarize material to facilitate quick consultation. Chapter references are aimed at providing additional useful resources for the reader. The figures are impressive, comprising detailed radiographs, grayscale and color sonograms, and clinical photographs.

    In that it may require more extensive searching and reading than some texts, this book may not be the consummate quick-reference guide to cardiovascular disease in small animals, but it is quite thorough. It covers not only common conditions such as cardiomyopathy but also abnormalities that the generalist may see perhaps once or twice in years of practice. This book would definitely be a useful addition to the veterinarian's in-office library.

    For further information about this book or to order a copy, visit www.mansonpublishing.com.

    NEXT: Relative Adrenal Insufficiency in the Critical Care Setting

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