Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy is a proven effective orthopedic surgery to treat canine anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries, performed by our veterinarian in Klamath Falls. In dogs, the anterior cruciate ligament prevents sliding of the tibia and femur (bones above and below the knee), so that your dog can stand, sit, jump, walk and run.
ACL Injury: How it Happens
ACL injury is very common in dogs, because this ligament withstands significant pressure and is used in almost every movement your dog makes. When functioning properly, the ligament stabilizes your dog's knee. However, the constant pressure on the knee area strains the ligament and allows the connected bones (the tibia, or shin bone and the femur, or thigh bone) to slide a bit forward or backward, when the legs move. As the bones rub together, your dog suffers pain and inflammation. Dogs with a torn ACL typically avoid placing their weight on the affected leg. When the ACL ligament ruptures or tears, your pet's knee is no longer stable, and your dog can experience lameness. TPLO surgery in Klamath Falls can typically help your dog recover freedom of movement.
How TPLO Surgery in Klamath Falls Benefits Your Dog
TPLO surgery corrects canine lameness due to ACL tears in a unique and effective manner. This surgery makes the ligament redundant. In other words--the surgery changes the operation of the leg so that the ligament is no longer needed for your dog to move his leg(s).
There are other surgeries to treat ACL tears or ruptures, but TPLO is generally superior because it provides better results, such as:
- Wider range of motion at the knee (also called the patella or stifle)
- Faster surgical recovery
- Less chance of developing arthritis in the joint
- Ability to resume former activity as your companion (playing, walking, running) or as a working dog
Goals of TPLO Surgery and How it Works
Your dog will require pre-surgical blood testing and general anesthesia for canine ACL, TPLO surgery. Your veterinary surgeon will cut the bone and rotate it slightly, inserting a custom-contoured stabilizing plate. The sculpted plate is fitted to the shape of your pet’s tibia (shin) bone, and fastened in place using surgical screws. Doing this changes the overall knee dynamics, so that bones cannot slide when pressure is placed on the area, as the dog moves. Now, the ACL ligament is no longer necessary for knee/leg movement.
Your dog will generally start placing weight on the stabilized leg in just a few days. For two months or so, your dog will be restricted to leashed walks. As the leg strengthens, over the next few months, your dog can gradually return to normal activity. You may be given physical therapy exercises to work on with your dog. Your surgeon will check your dog's progress during follow-ups and let you know when s/he is ready for new levels of activity.
Visit Your Local Klamath Falls Veterinarian and Expert TPLO Surgeon
When considering TPLO surgery for your dog, be sure to seek out an expert veterinarian in Klamath Falls and one with years of experience in this complex, but effective, canine ACL surgery. Count on Companion Pet Clinic in Klamath Falls, and Dr. Dean Wilson, for the very best pet care, including complex surgical procedures like TPLO. If your dog is limping, our Klamath Falls veterinarian can help. We'll diagnose your dog and discuss options, including surgery, to restore knee function and relieve pain. Call us at 541-882-7674 for an exam today.