What PetCardiology offers…
Transtelephonic Monitoring Services
CardioPaws is one of only a few facilities in the world that provide transtelephonic monitoring (TTM) for Veterinarians and we have been doing so for over 20 years. TTM is a useful tool that aids in the detection of cardiac arrhythmias when the symptoms are witnessed and occur fewer than 2-3 times a week.
- Cost includes use of monitor, FedEx shipping overnight, supplies and analysis
- Event monitoring results available immediately
- Instant online viewing of ECG monitor results
- Pre or post surgical baseline ECG (transmitter required)
- No contracts to sign
- We utilize "State-of-the-Art" high end cardiac monitoring equipment
- Historical "End of Monitoring Period" report provided for each client (for event monitoring only)
Holter monitoring is a valuable noninvasive tool for monitoring the cardiac rhythm over a 24-48 hour period or longer during normal daily activities. The advent of this diagnostic test has demonstrated that the incidence of serious arrhythmias is much greater than previously determined using routine electrocardiography. A resting electrocardiogram is typically recorded for several seconds to several minutes and is likely to miss or underestimate the underlying arrhythmia.
Holter monitoring is a good way to detect heart problems that other tests can’t, in particular, Cardiomyopathy which is a disease of the heart muscle. Dogs and cats that seem fit and seemingly healthy, even with normal ECGs and Echocardiograms, can suddenly collapse and die due to lethal arrhythmias. Some of these arrhythmias include ventricular tachycardia and prolonged pauses in heart rate.
Our fee includes:
- Micro-digital or full analogue recorders (volume dependent) with results within 24 hours… or sooner
- Fee includes analysis, FedEx shipping overnight, supplies and use of the monitor
- No contracts to sign
- Upon receipt of data, 24 hour turnaround guaranteed on all reports (M-F)
- Stat reports at no additional cost
- Full disclosure available upon request
- HRV/QT available upon request
Which breeds benefit from Holter Monitoring?
Many breeds are prone to Cardiomyopathy, however a 24 hour Holter procedure can pick up rhythm abnormalities early and treatment can extend an animals life. Some of the Dog and Cats breeds listed below have been identified to be prone to Cardiomyopathy.
Boxer, Great Dane, Great Pyrenees, Bull Mastiff, Cocker Spaniel, German Sheppard, Golden Retriever, Doberman Pincher, Irish Wolfhound, Labrador Retriever, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Newfoundland, Old English Sheepdog, Bouvier de Flanders, Rottweiler, Saluki.
Maine Coon, Ragdoll, Persians, American and British Shorthairs, Turkish Vans, and Norwegian Forest cats, to name a few.
Signs and Symptoms (both dogs and cats):
- Weight loss
- Rapid, labored & noisy breathing
- Decreased activity
- Congestive heart failure
- Irregular heart rhythm
- Heart murmur
- Lameness or paralysis of the hind legs
Some of the Holter Monitors we use include:
LifeCard-up to 1 week
How to apply the Holter Monitor
Please keep in mind that all animals are different so there will be some variation as to the final placement, which isn’t as important as being sure the electrodes stick firmly on the patient. The diagram shows the animal on it’s back utilizing the 5 lead digital monitor (there are several that we use depending upon the size and species.
The colors indicated are not necessarily the wire colors as some monitors have wires that are one color. The color of the slot where the wire goes into the cable or monitor (depending upon which type monitor you have) determines where to place the electrodes. The green colored slot is the ground (most important lead) which can be placed anywhere on the chest where it will be the most stable.
Shave the area thoroughly. Snap the wires on to the electrodes (round white cloth) before putting on your patient (this will prevent you from pressing too hard on the chest when you snap them on). Secure with tape if needed. If your patient likes to chew, an E collar might be indicated.
Use VetWrap or some sort of elastic bandage to secure the wires and the monitor to the patient. Make sure it’s not too tight, just enough to hold things in place. If you have a vest/sweater, this can be placed over the wrap.
Insert the batteries provided and turn the monitor on. Scroll through the top screen to see each Ch. of ECG which will appear below the menu. When you scroll each menu item, it will appear on the screen below it and using the arrows, you can change settings (not necessary unless you want to change from 24 hours to 48 hours). After scrolling to the end, press the ENTER BUTTON and the 24 hour countdown will appear on the monitor which indicates that the monitor is running. The monitor will be blank after it’s been on a while…don’t worry, it’s still running.
After the 24 hours is over, please remove the electrodes from the wires and place everything in the FedEx package provided. Please wrap monitor in protective wrap it came in or place inside hard case if provided to prevent damage. If the monitor is sent back without provided protection and is damaged in shipping, the monitor replacement is $900.00.
Please, do not remove the cable from the monitor for any reason. If it’s removed incorrectly, it can result in damaging the pins inside the cable which will then have to be replaced at a cost to you of $250.00/cable. Also, please do not remove the batteries once the monitoring period is over.
What's involved for you
- Keep them under adequate supervision while they go about normal activities wearing the Holter. A good analogy is to think of your dog/cat having stitches on their back and bandages over the top - that gives you an idea of the kind of supervision and care you need to take while they're wearing the Holter. Try to keep them from being in places where the bandages could get snagged on something, and also avoid other animals jumping on them or chewing at the bandages.
- Keep a diary of your pet's symptoms and activities as well as when medication is given.
- After about 24 hours the Holter can be removed.
What can go wrong?
It is possible that you wouldn’t get a decent reading because the electrodes weren’t secured enough. At Pet Cardiology, if a Holter isn’t readable, the second test is done at no charge but you do pay for shipping.
Leads may get damaged. It costs about $60.00 for a set of leads, including freight. The cable (some monitors only have wires) costs $250.00 to replace. This would only be likely to happen if your dog or cat isn’t supervised as it takes a lot of effort for them to get at the leads to damage them. Be careful not to cut the wires when removing the Holter! :(
The Holter unit may get damaged. The Holter is pretty sturdy and can handle being bumped around through normal activities. Damage is only likely to occur if not properly supervised, e.g. left to chew the bandages and harness off, left with other animals, or left in an enclosure where the Holter unit could get caught or crushed. Also, if the Holter is not shipped back in the same envelope and packing material it could get damaged when being returned to us.
Please do not get the monitor wet....no swimming or pool time (not a problem with cats) while the monitor is being worn.
Common sense is normally enough to keep the equipment safe. Dogs are rather boisterous, more so than cats, so more attention is needed for dogs. You should also beware of using any scanning company outside of the United States as they may not follow AAHA (American Animal Hospital Association) recommendations.