A new study published in the latest issue of the Journal of Small Animal Practice (JSAP), has identified an inverse relationship between packed cell volume (PCV) and the severity of myxomatous mitral valve disease (MMVD) in dogs. 

The study involved a retrospective analysis of prospectively collected data of dogs who had received an echocardiographic diagnosis of MMVD by a board-certified cardiologist and who also had a measurement of PCV available from the same examination. 

“In this study, PCV appeared to decrease with increasing severity of preclinical disease, producing a significant difference when stages B1 and B2 were compared. Interestingly, this inverse relationship with ACVIM stage did not continue through to stage C. PCV in stage C was significantly greater than either preclinical stage, lying closer to that of the unaffected dogs,” said Dr Jenny Wilshaw, corresponding author for the paper. Read more