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Cardiac Grades

The Congenital Cardiac Database is for dogs 12 months and over. Examinations performed on dogs less than 12 months will be treated as Consultations and no OFA breed numbers will be assigned.

Grading of heart murmurs is as follows

Grade 1

A very soft murmur only detected after very careful auscultation

Grade 2

A soft murmur that is readily evident

Grade 3

A moderately intense murmur not associated with a palpable precordial thrill (vibration)

Grade 4

A loud murmur; a palpable precordial thrill is not present or is intermittent

Grade 5

A loud cardiac murmur associated with a palpable precordial thrill; the murmur is not audible when the stethoscope is lifted from the thoracic body wall

Grade 6

A loud cardiac murmur associated with a palpable precordial thrill and audible even when the stethoscope is lifted from the thoracic wall

Other descriptive terms may be indicated at the discretion of the examiner; these include such timing descriptors as: proto(early)-systolic, ejection or crescendo-decrescendo, holo-systolic or pan-systolic, decrescendo, and tele(late)-systolic and descriptions of subjective characteristics such as: musical, vibratory, harsh, and machinery.

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