Pulmonic stenosis is a congenital heart defect where the pulmonary valve develops improperly.
Pulmonic stenosis is a defect from birth. Valves seal off the individual chambers in the heart. In this condition, the one-way blood flow through the heart is compromised by a defective valve. This defect allows blood to leak backwards, forcing the heart to increase pressure to move blood through.
The breeds most prone to pulmonic stenosis include:
A veterinarian will perform a full physical exam and a medical history questionnaire. Using a stethoscope, the doctor will listen for irregular heart rhythms. If a murmur is present, your doctor will order more in-depth tests. Angiocardiography, radiography, and echocardiogram will all help take a closer look at the heart’s function and physical make up, allowing the vet to make a firm diagnosis.
Treatment will depend on the severity of the condition. Some dogs have no symptoms with pulmonic stenosis and require no treatment. Many cases will respond favorably to medication alone. Beta blockers or beta-adrenergic blocking prescriptions can help the function of the valves.
There is also a surgical option of balloon valvuloplasty. This procedure allows the constricted valve to expand allowing easier blood flow and is performed under general anesthesia.