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Langford Vets- University of Bristol, Cardiology, Bristol, United Kingdom
Syncope is defined as a “transient loss of consciousness and postural tone, associated with reduced cerebral delivery of oxygen and/or metabolites”. The commonest cause for syncope is cardiovascular (arrhythmias, outflow tract obstruction, etc), but in rare cases it can be caused by transient hypo/hypertension or episodic hypoglycaemia.
Obtaining a detailed history, including the timeline of the episode and its association with recent events (exercise, respiratory signs, food intake, etc), is absolutely crucial to choosing an appropriate diagnostic course for a cat presenting with syncope. If the clinician does not accurately identify the clinical signs – for example, if syncope is mistaken for a seizure episode – further testing may result in an incorrect diagnosis and treatment plan which influences patient well-being and further decision making over the coming months or years.
This module covers the approach to diagnosing a cat with syncope, including presenting signs, testing and treatment plans.
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