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Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,


My 5 year old female hurt her left knee a couple of days ago, when she hopped out of my car.

Today, the Vet says she has likely ruptured the anterior or cranial cruciate ligament. He says that they can't tell 100% though, unless they open it up and have a look.


He said I could see a specialist vet and have a TPLO (tibial plateau levelling operation) done, or one of the variations of that. That could cost $6000-$8000

Or he is able to do an operation called "De Angelis" procedure, which uses a crimp to simulate the ligament. This would be about $2000.

Has anyone had either of these operations on their rott? How did it go?



I did see this excellent post http://rottweilersonline.com/forum/vets-corner/6622-cranial-cruciate-ligament-ruptures.html that discusses both.

I'm need to read it again carefully - parts of it go over my head. I want to make sure I make a good decision about which operation to do.


I'm just wondering though what other people's experiences are with injuries of this kind?



What's sad, is that this is the 3rd leg injury she has had. As a pup, an older dog injured one of her legs. Her breeder later gave her to me, as her hip scores were no good enough for breeding. 2 years ago she injured the right knee, such that it got infected. She's showing some signs of arthritis too.


I can afford to get the more expensive operation. From what I understand though, the long-term benefits of that operation are not necessarily better than the other operation though.

The specialist is also 2 hours drive, vs the local vet. I asked the local Vet and he said he does this operation a few times a month, it seems a common operation.


cheers,
-adam
 

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Where are you located?? If in the Eastern US, I'd HIGHLY recommend you contact Veterinary Orthopedic Sports medicine (VOSM: Veterinary Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Group).

Dr Canapp did a cruciate repair on a friends dog and on her first weekend back in the breed ring took a 3 point major - not only is the facility top notch, the rehab and entire staff are fantastic.

That said, I would hesitate to have a 'general practice' veterinarian do an orthopedic surgery on my dog. Spay/neuter surgery yes, but any specialized surgery, I'll find (and pay for) the best, even if I have to go hungry for a long time.

Please, don't "price shop" for the least expensive vet to do the surgery - you often get what you pay for, and with such a specialized surgery, cheaper is not always better. I work for a vet, and I literally CRINGE when we get calls from folks looking for a cheaper vet to spay/neuter or otherwise operate on their pets.

Would you shop around for a cheaper price for surgery for yourself or a family member? If you can't afford the surgery right now, get her into a rehab facility and strengthen her 'support system' so that when she does have surgery, she'll be stronger and heal faster.

Acupuncture, laser therapy, NSAID pain relief as well as joint support (a good fish oil, Dasuquin), and keep her lean - almost too lean.

If finances are an issue - check into CareCredit (CareCredit® Healthcare Finance - Payment Plans and Financing for Cosmetic Surgery, Dental, Vision, Hearing, Veterinary & Other Medical Procedures)

The DeAngelis procedure sounds to be the same as the tightrope repair - VERY common for smaller dogs and dogs that are not very athletic. A larger breed dog would probably benefit, and do better post surgically, with the TTA or TPLO surgery - but I would still consult with a specialist.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
No, I'm in Australia actually.

I can afford the more expensive surgery, and are willing to get it for her.

The local Vet seemed to be of the opinion that the DeAngelis procedure is would be just as good and that he does them routinely. I'm just not informed enough to know whether that is good advice or not.

I think you're right that I need to consult a specialist at least before making a decision. I am a bit skeptical that DeAngelis is suitable for larger dogs - from what I've been reading it does seem TPLO/TTA is better suited for rottweilers.

If anyone else has had this experience please do mention.

thanks for your reply,

-adam
 

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I would NOT have the tightrope/DeAngelis procedure done on a Rottweiler unless the dog is VERY light in bone and VERY amenable to 6-12 weeks of restricted activity. With the TTA or TPLO, you also have quite an extensive post surgical rehab (almost more important than the surgery itself!), but with a large breed dog, I think the 'end result' is a more stable repair.

Of course the local vet thinks the tightrope would be 'just as good' because HE wants the income - he doesn't want you to go to a specialist.

I hesitate to say I've been very lucky as my girls are quite active, especially Jayda - she's got elbow dysplasia - and if she had a cruciate repair the rehab would be hell as she's C-R-A-Z-Y and tough to keep down - she has two speeds - stop and 100 miles per hour.

Good luck in your research!
 

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Hi All,


My 5 year old female hurt her left knee a couple of days ago, when she hopped out of my car.

Today, the Vet says she has likely ruptured the anterior or cranial cruciate ligament. He says that they can't tell 100% though, unless they open it up and have a look.


-adam
Adam, before you look into surgeries you need to know what the problem is. I would look for a second opinion with an orthopedic specialist if you can find one in your area. By the way, ruptured cruciates are common with large breed dogs like the Rottwielers.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks everyone.

I did take her to the orthopedic specialist today and he examined her and confirmed that she has a ruptured ACL in the left hind leg. There is also some damage to the meniscal cartilages, as she does have a clicking sound coming from the knee.

The right hind leg (which she previously damaged 2 years ago) seems OK, which was good.

She is going to get the TPLO surgery today and I should be able to pick her up tomorrow. The TPLO will end up being $4400, plus some follow up examinations - not as bad as I was lead to believe.

Luckily I will be home from work for the next 3 weeks so I can watch over her.


BTW, I ended up watching heaps of TPLO videos on youtube. It's actually a great resource for information on the surgery, because there are some good videos from actual surgeons describing and showing the operation.

Having educated myself some more on the topic, I definitely feel the TPLO is a better option for Rottwielers.



-adam
 

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Well, thought I would give another update on my rott, who has just now had her 2nd TPLO done - this time on her other leg!

Apparently many rotts who have one knee done, end up injuring the 2nd within a couple of years. Exactly what has happened [email protected]!

Hopefully this time recovery will be easier, as I know what to expect.

He first TPLO worked really well, and I'm glad I did it. Hence why I didn't hesitate to get the other knee done when she recently injured it. The key to recovery is making sure you do all the rehabilitation exercises, especially the slow walking.
 

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Most dog that have a cruciate tear repaired will injure the other one - could be as little as a year post op - most dogs we see for 'repeat repair' have injured themselves shortly after being given the green light to return to normal activity even if post op instructions have been followed to the letter.

Glad to hear everything went well for both surgeries...now you never have to worry about cruciate injuries!
 
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