Objectives: Diuretic therapy reduces preload and relieves congestion secondary to cardiac dysfunction. Torsemide (torasemide) is a loop diuretic with longer duration of action, decreased susceptibility to diuretic resistance, and adjunctive aldosterone antagonist properties compared with furosemide. We hypothesized that torsemide would be well tolerated and no less effective than furosemide at diuresis, control of clinical signs, and maintenance of quality of life (QOL) in dogs with congestive heart failure (CHF). Animals, materials and methods: Seven client-owned dogs with stable CHF receiving twice daily oral furosemide and adjunctive medications. Utilizing a double-blinded, randomized, crossover design, dogs were administered either oral furosemide at their current dose or an equivalent oral dose of torsemide (1/10 of the daily furosemide dose divided into twice daily dosing) on day 0. Crossover occurred at day 7 and the study ended on day 14. Clinical, laboratory, radiographic, and QOL variables were evaluated on days 0, 7 and 14. Results: No dogs developed recurrent CHF during the study. Mean furosemide dose on day 0 was 5.13 mg/kg/day (range 2.8-9.6). Following torsemide treatment, creatinine (P = 0.020), urea nitrogen (P = 0.013), phosphorus (P = 0.032), albumin (P = 0.019), carbon dioxide (P = 0.015) and anion gap (P = 0.005) were significantly increased, and urine specific gravity (P = 0.004) and chloride (P = 0.021) were significantly decreased compared with furosemide dosing. No differences in QOL were found. Conclusions: Results indicate that torsemide is equivalent to furosemide at controlling clinical signs of CHF in dogs and is likely to achieve greater diuresis vs. furosemide. Larger clinical trials evaluating torsemide as a first or second-line loop diuretic for congestive heart failure in dogs are warranted. © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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