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Low heart rate

Posted: Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:55 am
by Buzzwizz619
Has anyone got any experience with rats with a low heart rate? Roughly 200BPM

Currently started treatment with Vetmedin but vet didnt really know how to treat and is kindda poking in the dark plus from what i can see vetmedin decreases heart rate...


Re: Low heart rate

Posted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 10:56 am
by [cub]
I have very little experience with heart problems but apparently: "Pimobendan usually decreases heart rate (negative chronotrope) in animals with CHF." (Plumb's Veterinary Drug Handbook) Not sure if it would then necessarily decrease heart rate in an animal without CHF though.

Re: Low heart rate

Posted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:42 pm
by Buzzwizz619
That's what I'm not sure about too she said vetmedin works by helping the heart beat more effectively she said she's sure he's not got a heart murmur or fluid on the lung BUT she's not my usual exotics vet and she didn't actually realise his heart rate was unusually low until she listened to the others and realised how quick they were

The vetmedin was chosen simply because that's what my exotic vet used for my other rats with heart murmurs.

It does sound like his heart rate has increased to about 250bpm and his respiratory rate has decreased a small amount .

He also has a issue with his skin, it's either a infection and abcesses or a ulcerated tumour atm we are treating witg synulox but I'm going see how it goes and hopefully see the exotics vet next friday If she's in

Thanks amy

Re: Low heart rate

Posted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:48 pm
by [cub]
I'm a bit confused ... the vet said the rat definitely doesn't have a heart murmur, but treated him as though he did have one? :? On the other hand, if his heart rate is returning to normal (250 may or may not be at the low end of normal, depending on which book you ask) then I guess he may as well stay on the medication? At least until you see your usual vet.

As I understand it (which is not very well :P ) pimobendan increases the strength of each heartbeat and widens blood vessels. This should make it easier for the heart to pump blood, so the heart rate should decrease, so it's somewhat mystifying that the opposite seems to be happening here. On the other hand, physiology is weird and pharmacology is weirder...

Re: Low heart rate

Posted: Fri Jul 28, 2017 10:56 pm
by Buzzwizz619
I'm a bit confused ... the vet said the rat definitely doesn't have a heart murmur, but treated him as though he did have one? :?
Yep :lol:

i took Claude with 3 problems
1. a sore on his back with a mass under it - possibly a ulcerated tumour or abscess, treating with Synulux for
2. Increased respiratory rate
3. suspected heart issues

So after explaining everything to the vet i said the only time i seen a rat breathing the way he is with a clear chest is with my 2 rats who were diagnosed by the exotics vet with heart murmurs. She listened to his heart and said it sounded fine.

I then got Claude his brother out who also have a sore on his back and a smaller mass, she listened to his heart and said it sounded really fast compared to Claudes. Id listened to Claudes the night before and throught it sounded slow but wasnt sure as his breathing was really heavy. So i said i thought his sounded really slow comapred to everyone elses. So she listened to it again and still said their was no murmur or anything.

She asked me what my other rats had been treated with and I explained vetmedin but they had heart murmurs, she clearly had no idea how to treat so she said its worth a try as it improved the way the heart pumps. I explained that my others were on 1/7th twice a day but they were only 500g where as claude is 750g and i asked if he should be on more like a 5th and she said "sure well go with that", i then asked if he needed frusol too "yeah you can give it a try", so i asked how much "how much were the others on?" so i started to explain splinter was on 0.1ml and she said "yeah go with that then" but when i continued to explain that he was on a very high dose because he had alot of issues early on and the exotic vet only gave ruben 0.05ml "yeah mabey go with 0.05ml then".

All in all i got the feeling she completly hadnt got a clue about the heart (although she was pretty thorough with the other stuff) and was literally just basing everything on what i said the exotic vet did for my other rats.

It was all a little bit strange the appointment ended with "keep an eye on his heart rate yourself and if it drops below 100 then..." :/

Re: Low heart rate

Posted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 10:16 am
by [cub]
Wow. :lol:

I did a bit of digging and as well as various heart problems, bradycardia can apparently be caused by thiamin (B1) deficiency in rats? ... 3-0232.pdf
It seems pretty unlikely though as a cause. :?

Re: Low heart rate

Posted: Sat Jul 29, 2017 8:38 pm
by Buzzwizz619
Thankyou ill have a look into Vitamin B1, they were fed on P@H nuggets and science select nuggets before they came to me so not sure how likely this is as it doesnt seem to have any information on the Vit B1 content.

Interestingly it seems in dogs Bradycardia can be a indicator of Kidney failure, i cant find anything specific to rats but based on how prone rats can be to kidney issues, their age and their previous diet i am wondering if this is a possibility.

Going to ring the vets monday see of i can get in with the exotics vet when im off work on Friday, fingers crossed!