Tolerability and clinical efficacy of acetazolamide for treatment of hypochloremia in canine congestive heart failure

The University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine is currently recruiting dogs with stable congestive heart failure (CHF) and hypochloremia (low blood chloride concentrations) for a clinical trial evaluating the effect of adding acetazolamide to standard-of-care CHF medications on blood chloride levels.

Enrollment Status: Enrolling

Inclusion Criteria:  Dogs that weigh more than 4.4 lbs, have stable CHF (not requiring hospitalization), have underlying mitral valve disease and hypochloremia can be considered for enrollment.  The dogs must be treated with standard-of-care CHF medications and be willing to eat a diet specifically formulated for heart disease for the study duration (3 months).

Exclusion Criteria:  Dogs with normal blood chloride concentrations, advanced kidney disease (serum creatinine >2.5 mg/dl), weight <4.4 lbs, dietary restrictions, inability to take standard-of-care CHF medications or significant medical conditions other than CHF are not eligible for inclusion.  Dogs that are hospitalized for CHF treatment can be considered for enrollment 2 weeks after hospital discharge.

Study design: This is a randomized, placebo-controlled study where dogs will receive either treatment with acetazolamide or placebo (suspension without medication in it) twice daily for 2 months.  Four visits to UF Cardiology are required.  Tests that will be done at these visits include bloodwork, urinalysis, chest xrays and an echocardiogram.

Costs:  The study will cover the cost of examinations, bloodwork, urinalysis, chest xrays, echocardiogram, cardiac diet, and study medication.  The cost of standard-of-care CHF medications is not covered by the study.

Contact: Dr. Darcy Adin, Cardiology Service 352 392 2235.

Principal Investigator: Dr. Darcy Adin

Background: The objective of this study is to determine if acetazolamide will increase serum chloride concentrations in dogs with CHF and hypochloremia (low blood chloride concentrations).  Hypochloremia has been recently shown to be a negative prognostic indicator in both dogs and people with CHF and so investigating methods to correct it are warranted.  Acetazolamide is a diuretic that is not commonly used for CHF but may be beneficial because it promotes chloride resorption in the kidney.

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