Arterial thromboembolism is a disorder of the heart and blood of cats. It is one of several complications that occur in cats with heart damage. Blood clots (thrombi) may occur within the heart and travel through the bloodstream until they become lodged. A common site for a clot to lodge is toward the rear of the body, where the aorta divides to supply blood to the rear legs. The blood supply to one or both legs can be greatly reduced by a lodged clot, depending on where the clot is. Rear-leg lameness, pain, and cool rear legs are common signs.
Important Points in Treatment
1. Initial treatment is aimed at improving circulation to the rear limbs. Blood tests and radiographs (x-rays) are used to assess and monitor the disorder during treatment.
2. If the condition fails to improve, surgical removal of the blood clot is necessary. This requires general anesthesia.