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Compendium June 2010 (Vol 32, No 6)

Clinical Snapshot: Muffled Heart Sounds in a Dog

by C. Bille, DVM, E. Bomassi, DVM, S. Libermann, DVM

    An 11-year-old, 12.5-kg, mixed-breed, male dog presented with a 4-day history of fatigue, abdominal enlargement, and anorexia. The dog became acutely lethargic a few hours before presentation. Clinical examination confirmed lethargy and revealed tachycardia (220 bpm), tachypnea (25 breaths/min), muffled heart sounds, a weak peripheral pulse, jugular distention, a capillary refill time of >2 sec, and ascites. Echocardiography was used to obtain images A and B .

    1. What is the likely explanation for the muffled heart sounds in this patient?

    2. What underlying etiologies should be considered?

    3. What further diagnostics should be recommended?

    To see the answers, download the pdf .

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