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> Cruciate Ligament Surgery Poor Recovery
steveeills
post 8th Aug 2017, 8:02 pm
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Hi Folks,

Our girl 10yr GSDx ruptured her cruciate ligament last year. She had the banding operation and made a great recovery in the first few weeks. Unfortunatley she slipped coming up a step at six weeks post op which loosened the band and she had surgery again. Following this surgery she took a long time to recover and was on Metacam for months.

As it stands she is still limping in varying degrees. Some days she can barely get up and is on three legs and others she trots around with a noticeable limp. This year she has head two sets of xrays on her back, hips and leg all with no indication of why she is still limping. The vet has suggested it's her age and possibly arthritis setting in on the knee joint. We have tried her on a few courses of pain killers with no improvement.

We are concerned we are missing something and she is lethargic and getting fat due to lack of exercise which we know is not helping the limp. Her muscle tone has pretty much gone on her bad leg and lower back. She is on a low energy diet but she has previously been used to huge walks daily so I think the lack of exercise is more to blame for the weight gain. Now she does 20mins a day as we worry her limp starts to get more prounced if we continue.

Has anyone else been in a similar situation ?

We were looking into CT scans but my vet does not have the equipment so we will need a specialist referral and our vet does not seem convinced we will find anything.

L

This post has been edited by steveeills: 8th Aug 2017, 8:06 pm
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moorx
post 8th Aug 2017, 8:11 pm
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I'm sorry I don't have any knowledge of this op but I just wondered whether your vet has suggested anything like hydrotherapy to build her muscles back up?
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AnnS
post 8th Aug 2017, 8:37 pm
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Not sure where you are in scotland but K9 massage in Stirling helped our old dog. Woody could barely walk he was so stiff. Certainly gave him an extra year. Hope something helps your dog.
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Louwra
post 9th Aug 2017, 7:32 am
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Second that for hydrotherapy. Swimming is excellent for building muscles and getting her moving without straining the joints

Are you giving any supplements? I find turmeric very good for inflammation, pain relief etc. Look for the Turmeric User Group UK on Facebook, or google Golden Paste. I take it myself for arthritis, and have noticed a marked improvement, specially with pain, its so much easier. I give it to the dogs, two of mine have a strained ligament, due to mad running and slipping! I can always tell when they havent had it! I make the paste myself although you can buy it, its cheaper when you make it yourself smile.gif

The other supplement is Green Lipped Mussel, I normally get it from Holland&Barrett, Yumove is also good,, though more expensive, and it has the green lipped mussel as main ingredient


You say she had a second operation, did they use the banding technique again? I would ask for referral to an orthopedic specialist, and see what they say

I had two dogs who have had cruciate surgery, both were done with TPLO, and never had an issue, slow recovery, but both were fine, and never had another issue

Hope you get her sorted!


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steveeills
post 9th Aug 2017, 8:41 am
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Many thanks for the replies.

We don't live on the mainland so getting to a hydrotherapy centre regularly is not an option as they are all over three hours away or more. We do try and walk her in the sea where we know it is flat but obviously, it's not the same as a controlled hydrotherapy swim.

Thank you for the supplement information I will certainly look into that. At the moment she gets garlic, cod liver oil along with Arden Grange Senior Lo-Cal which has some joint supplements in it. She also gets some raw chicken a few times a week.

Yes her second op was a repeat of the first banding and she has never really been sound since then.

L
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Dalsmum
post 9th Aug 2017, 9:12 am
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Since her curciate repair (TPLO) I have given my dog Golden Paste and Riaflex.https://www.riaflex.co.uk/

I found the rehab guide on here https://www.topdoghealth.com/home-rehab-guides/ very useful. Although it is meant for immediately after the operation you may find something helpful in it


My vet recommended Nutraquin plus.( Nutraquin+) She said some people were able to stop Metacam when giving this. It is not a prescription medicine but is only available from a vet.


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Lab Lady
post 9th Aug 2017, 5:49 pm
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If she was mine, I'd ask my vet to send her xrays and notes to a specialist referral centre for them to review. There may be something your vet has missed that they can see. You can then make a decision whether to take her there or not to have further tests done. You'll probably have to pay a fee for this, think I paid 90 for a heart specialist to review one of my dogs who was not already their patient.

Was it your general pratice vet that did the surgery?
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barkingrottie
post 9th Aug 2017, 7:22 pm
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If I was you , I would take your dog to Noel Fitzpatrick. He did my dog...I was very happy ..
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griff
post 10th Aug 2017, 9:59 am
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my lad had the banding op, he was like your girl...intermitantly lame holding his leg up...i actually asked the vet to amputate i was that concerned...i know it sounds really daft but have you had a real good look at the backs of your dogs claws? turns out my lads claws had opened at the back...my vet couldn't believe that could be the cause of his issues but i wrapped them in duct tape and took him in to see the vet...he walked in on all 4 legs! i am sure this won't be the case with your girl but just wanted to mention it just incase
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mongrel mad
post 10th Aug 2017, 11:38 am
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Our 11 yr terrier x has disc problems in her back and is on Yumove advance. She's not on any other medication as she copes very well just on the Yumove.

http://www.lintbells.com/yumove-advance-dogs It's only available via vets.
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Dalsmum
post 10th Aug 2017, 12:34 pm
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I would agree with sending xrays to a specialist. When my dog had suspected cruciate injury my vet was not sure as she did not have the 'drawer ' symptom. He sent xrays to the specialist who reviewed and reported back. Cost 60

the specialist advised he was 99% sure it was a cruciate injury and subsequently operated.
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Annieskel
post 11th Aug 2017, 9:08 pm
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QUOTE(steveeills @ 9th Aug 2017, 9:41 am) *


We don't live on the mainland so getting to a hydrotherapy centre regularly is not an option as they are all over three hours away or more. We do try and walk her in the sea where we know it is flat but obviously, it's not the same as a controlled hydrotherapy swim.



I have a friend who ran out o money for hydro for her dog, she got a paddling pool and used to put him in there every day and walk him round. She put enough water in to support his body while walking him round, this is how they do it with a treadmill in a tank, enough water to support the body. At the end of the session she used to let him play in the paddling pool. lol.gif


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pangolin
post 12th Aug 2017, 3:48 pm
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Wondering why she has had artificial band rather than TTA/TPLO or similar? My vet (and research) suggested band option not a good one for large dogs (I think they say dogs over 60lb/25kgish) due to weight on the joint and likelihood of failure. Did your vet explain why they opted for this method?

My GSD x Rottie had a TTA when she was around 7/8 - gets a touch stiff now if she overdoes it but in general has normal/pre-op mobility. It probably took a year post-op for her to get 100% but she was probably back to around 80% or so within a few months, so a fairly decent recovery.

Just as an aside from the op - may I suggest perhaps checking her thyroid levels? Being her age, breed and with some possible symptoms of hypothyroidism (joint paint/stiffness, weight gain, muscle wastage, lethargy) it could be worth ruling in/out.

This post has been edited by pangolin: 12th Aug 2017, 3:48 pm
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Dalsmum
post 12th Aug 2017, 8:17 pm
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Your vet should know if there is arthritis in the joint, which there will be due to the instability in the joint before surgery.

The specialist who treated my dog showed me the arthritic changes in her joint on the xray before her surgery.

My dog has since shown lameness a couple of times after extended exercise and two of the vets at my local practice have stated that they can feel arthritis in her joint. A few days on Metacam has resolved each time.

She currently gets Golden Paste and Riaflex and is still able to do agility.

It certainly sounds as if there could be something else going on with your dog.




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Grotbag
post 13th Aug 2017, 8:50 am
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QUOTE(pangolin @ 12th Aug 2017, 4:48 pm) *

Wondering why she has had artificial band rather than TTA/TPLO or similar? My vet (and research) suggested band option not a good one for large dogs (I think they say dogs over 60lb/25kgish) due to weight on the joint and likelihood of failure. Did your vet explain why they opted for this method?



I was wondering this too. My vet didn't recommend tightrope repairs on dogs over 15kg who were young/very active, despite having had success historically with dogs around 35kg (prior to newer techniques coming into the mainsteam).

Mine had a repair (at 13.5kg) and was still intermittently lame 9 months later. Sadly, at this point he ruptured his cruciate on the other leg. We were referred to an orthopaedic vet who carried out a modified TTA due to him also having a low-grade luxating patella on the same leg. When we asked about his previous repair and the intermittent lameness he suggested that he may have additional damage to his meniscus and the damaged part may need to be removed as it would be causing pain. He recommended waiting until the TTA had mostly healed before investigating.

As it transpired, the enforced rest due to the ortho surgery seemed to do the trick and he's now completely sound in both legs at the age of 11. He has been on Yumove ever since the original op. Never did any hydrotherapy - mine has always been an old man at heart - doesn't like to go in above the knees! Followed the top dog health rehab guide almost to the letter when it came to exercise guidelines.

I would definitely suggest getting a referral to an orthopaedic specialist to investigate further. Knowing what I know now, I would always opt for a TTA over a repair - the recovery was so much easier.
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