Buster is a fun-loving, three year old, Maltese cross who loves going for his walks. One day, he woke up limping on his left hind leg and was brought in to the vets for a check up. On examination, he was very tender in his left knee, so Buster was scheduled for an xray of the knee under anaesthesia. Further examination under anaesthesia and xrays of the knee revealed that he had most likely ruptured his cranial cruciate ligament.
The cranial cruciate ligament is a band of tissue within the knee joint that provides stability in the knee when weight is placed on the foot. When it is ruptured the knee becomes unstable with each step that Buster takes resulting in pain and discomfort. The best treatment for the problem is to surgically re-establish the stability in the knee. For small dogs, this is achieved by the De Angelis procedure, where synthetic suture is placed across the knee to hold it stable. For larger dogs, the recommended procedure is usually a procedure known as Tibial Plateua Levelling Osteotomy (TPLO) or its variations, a surgery that usually requires a specialist surgeon to perform. The aim of the surgery is to eliminate instability in the knee during weight bearing, hence taking away the pain and discomfort.
Buster, being a small dog, underwent the De Angelis procedure here at the clinic. He was discharged the day following surgery to recuperate at home quietly. His owners have also been diligent in helping him with physiotherapy, aiding his rapid recovery post surgery.
Buster is now without any discomfort in his knee and gradually going back to full physical activity. Soon, he'll be able to enjoy running around again!