Clinical records of dogs with spontaneous degenerative mitral valve disease (DMVD) with clinical signs related to congestive heart failure (CHF) recruited during routine clinical practice between 2001 and 2018 at the Cardiology Unit of the Veterinary Teaching Hospital (University of Milan) were included in this retrospective cohort study. Baseline echocardiographic data were evaluated. Median survival time (MST) was calculated. Data on therapeutic treatment, ISACHC (International Small Animal Cardiac Health Council) or ACVIM (American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine) classes were reviewed based on the inclusion period and type of endpoint (i.e. cardiac death or death for other causes). A univocal classification was needed, and the patients classified in ISACHC classes II, IIIa and IIIb, visited before 2009, were reallocated to ACVIM class C. The main goal of this data review was to retrospectively evaluate 259 clinical records of subjects belonging to ACVIM C class examined between 2001 to 2018 and 202 dogs examined between 2010 to 2018. In this way, in the second group, the bias of the reclassification was avoided. The MST (median survival time) of these subjects was 531 d (2001-2018) and 335.5 d (2010-2018), respectively. Univariate survival regression analysis for subjects included from 2010 to 2018 showed as significantly related to cardiac death (CD): left atrium to aorta ratio (LA/Ao) (HR 2.754, p=0.000), E wave (HR 2.961, p=0.000), E/A ratio (HR 1.372, p=0.000), end-diastolic (HR 1.007, p=0.000) (EDVI) and end-systolic (HR 1.012, p=0.026) (ESVI) volume indexes, allometric diastolic (HR 4.018, p=0.000) (LVIDdN) and systolic (HR 2.674, p=0.049) (LVIDsN) left ventricular internal diameters, age (HR 1.006, p=0.009) and pulmonary hypertension severity (HR=1.309, p=0.012) (PH). Multivariate analysis, adjusted for age, showed that the only variable that determined a statistically significant difference in MST was PH severity (HR 1.334, p=0.033). The type of therapeutic treatment within this class was not significant for the MST of the subjects.
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