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Comparative Research Identifies Most Effective Knee Surgery for Large Dogs

Cranial cruciate ligament disease results in partial or complete joint instability, pain and lameness. Two types of surgical treatments are commonly used to treat this condition in dogs: lateral fabellar suture and tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO). In this study, researchers from the University of Illinois compared the two surgeries to determine whether one is more effective. Methods used to determine surgical outcomes included an owner survey, muscle mass measurements, and pain-free motion and gait analysis of the affected knee. The study established TPLO surgery as the more effective option for large and giant breed dogs. In addition to the main surgical comparison, a second-year veterinary student organized and analyzed the preoperative data from these dogs to determine risk factors for concurrent meniscal tear. Funding from this study also helped a promising new scientist establish her lab and research program. (D08CA-304)

Posted by MAFon June 13, 2011.

Categories: Animal health, Canine health, Dog health


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Submitted by Kathy at: July 14, 2011
My English Springer Spaniel at the age of 5 had TPLO surgery performed by Dr Todd Allen in St Louis MO. It was the most fantastic surgery for any dog having a ACL damage issue.We followed the Dr orders to the tee with her and never had to repair the other leg! As active dogs as ESS are, we still let her enjoy life but did make sure that she did not do anything extreme that would damage the other leg.There were 2 other dogs that we know tore their ACL's at the saem time and had the other procedure done and you know both dogs,smaller than mine, had difficulty walking. My pup was able to walk out of Vet's office on her own. She had extreme displaysia/arthritis but managed to make it to 13,,w/out TPLO I highly doubt she would have done so well and lived so longontinue the research !
Submitted by Julie at: June 19, 2011
Almost three years ago, our 110 pound golden had lateral fabellar suture surgery, and sure enough the next year, just as our vet predicted, the other knee went out. He's just too big! That being said, we opted for the suture surgery both times as opposed to the TPLO. For one, small town vets do not perform TPLO surgery and when we found the cost of the TPLO surgery was more than twice as expensive, we opted for the local surgery. Our dog is doing great. He goes for walks, he plays with our other dog in the yard, he doesn't limp. The TPLO surgery might have been just fantastic but we can't imagine a better outcome. And with the money saved on the surgery, we can still send our children to college. :)