CRUCIATE LIGAMENT RUPTURE
Cruciate disease is one of the most common causes of back leg lameness in dogs. Our specialist orthopaedic performs the tibial plateau levelling osteotomy (TPLO) which is the treatment of choice for CCL rupture in small animals.
- TPLO with concurrent correction of patellar luxation
- Single stage bilateral TPLO in cases with bilateral CCL rupture
- TPLO and concurrent limb alignment correction
- TPLO in cats
Canine Hip Dysplasia (CHD) is one of the most common causes of lameness in dogs. It can become evident from as early as 5-9 months of age. It is normally caused by an unsynchronised growth between the bones and the supporting ligaments.
The most common ways to diagnose Hip Dysplasia is by radiology, palpation using the “Ortolani Sign”. The Ortolani Sign can be performed in the anaesthetised or heavily sedated patient and relies on manual force to subluxate the femoral head, gradual abduction of the hip joint allows relocation of the femoral head into the hip socket.
Radiology is the only way to evaluate the abnormal medial displacement of the femoral head within the acetabulum and the arthritic changes that might have already formed.
When the conservative approach fails to provide relief, the surgical options is then explored.
Every fixation method to manage fractures should be attentively evaluated on each individual clinical case, breed, general patient’s condition, age, type of fracture and mechanism of injury. Most fractures can be managed by either internal (plate/ rod) fixation or external fixation (ESF). The Vet will gather information with a thorough examination and radiological evidence and discuss the possible solutions and costs with the owner. Typical types of fixations are:
- K-wires/Elastic Stable Intramedullary Nailing: Mostly used in long bones. It consists in inserting a wire near a joint, the wire must be placed in the end range of motion.
- Internal Fixation: This method is mostly appropriate in less complex fractures and when there still is a good bone quality to help healing. The bones are reduced into their normal alignment and held together with screws, plates and/or an oblique tension band wire. Internal fixation may be contraindicated in the presence of an extremely severe comminution and soft tissue severe compromise.
- Intramedullary Rod fixation: This method is used normally only with long bones/tibial fractures. It gives immediate stability and is minimally invasive.
- External fixation: This fixations is indicated in more complex fractures and can be used in presence of contaminated fractures.
Angular limb deformities can be extremely complicated cases and in relatively straightforward cases we use a dome-shaped saw blade to produce a ‘ball and socket’ at the site of the osteotomy. This allows the limb to be realigned in multiple planes preserving good bone to bone contact which provides added stability and speeds healing.
Osteoarthritis is an inflammation of the joints and is a common condition in cats and dogs. When the cartilage within the joint becomes damaged, the bones start to rub together resulting discomfort, stiffness and pain. Osteoarthritis in dogs and cats is always secondary to an underlying joint disease and management of the underlying disease is important.
Osteoarthritis can’t be cured but can be helped with anti-inflammatory medication, supplements, dietary management, and through physiotherapy.
The most common cause of fore limb lameness is pain associated with the elbow and they are most of the time approached by surgery.