What is the prognosis for diaphragmatic hernia in cats?

What is the prognosis for diaphragmatic hernia in cats?

Our question this week was:

Dr. Debra – My cat was hit by a car about 2 years ago and suffered a tear in her DIAPHRAGM. It was not detected until 3 months later. She had a 70% breach of intestinal material, collapsed a lung and displaced her heart.

Surgery resolved it and checks 6 weeks confirmed her heart was corrected, 10 months later confirmed correct heart sounds.

On her check-up today the vet found her heart hard to hear on the left side. She has had abnormal breathing since the accident and I was told this will be expected. Now the vet is concerned about a reoccurring hernia and wants to x-ray. Could you tell me if this is a likely scenario and what the prognosis for a re-occurring hernia could be?

Gail Smith


Hi – thanks for your email. You wrote that your cat had a diaphragmatic hernia probably caused by being hit by a car a few years before. This was corrected and she did fine but the hernia may have recurred.

The prognosis should be good. They should do x-rays to determine if this is the situation.

An article that might be helpful to you is Diaphragmatic hernia in Cats.

Best of luck!

Dr. Debra

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