Is your furry friend struggling with the debilitating effects of ACL Injury? Our dedicated team at Trail Pet Hospital offers ACL repair to relieve your pet's discomfort and restore mobility. You can count on our compassionate team for the highest quality care.
Why Would Your Pet Require ACL Repair?
The anterior cruciate ligament, or ACL, is a major ligament that helps stabilize the knee joint. When the ACL is torn, it can cause significant pain and instability in the affected knee, hindering your pet's mobility and overall quality of life. Surgical ACL repair helps relieve your pet's pain, restore stability to the joint, and promote proper healing.
What Are the Causes of ACL Tears?
The most common cause of ACL tears is a traumatic injury, which can occur due to a sudden change in direction, landing from a jump, or a direct blow to the knee. Factors that increase the risk of ACL tears include the following:
- Age: ACL tears are more common in middle-aged to older dogs and cats due to age-related degeneration in the ligaments.
- Activity Level: Dogs and cats engaged in rigorous physical activities are at an increased risk of ACL tears.
- Previous Injury: Dogs and cats with previous knee injuries are at an increased risk of ACL tears.
- Obesity: Excess weight can stress the knee joint, weakening the ligament over time and making it susceptible to tears or ruptures.
- Breed: Some dog and cat breeds are more prone to ACL tears than others.
What Are the Symptoms of ACL Tears?
The most common symptom of ACL tears in dogs and cats is lameness, which may be sudden or gradual in onset. Other symptoms may include the following:
- Difficulty Bearing Weight: Your furry friend may avoid putting weight on the injured leg and may even hold it up off the ground.
- Swelling and Pain: The affected knee joint may show signs of swelling, and your cat or dog may display signs of pain or discomfort if you touch or manipulate the joint.
- Changes in Gait: Pets may exhibit an altered or abnormal gait such as limping, or favoring the unaffected leg.
- Decreased Mobility and Activity: Pets may become less active, reluctant to engage in physical activities they once enjoyed, or have difficulty jumping or climbing stairs.
- Instability of the Knee Joint: Pets may experience a noticeable instability in the affected leg, causing it to give way or buckle during movement.
What Are the Treatment Options for ACL Tears?
There are several treatment options for ACL tears in dogs and cats. The ideal one will depend on the tear's severity and your pet's overall health.
Non-surgical treatment: In some cases, non-surgical interventions may be an option for dogs or cats with torn ACLs. Treatments may include RICE - Rest, ice, compression, and elevation. We may also recommend anti-inflammatory medication or physical therapy.
Surgical treatment: Surgery may be necessary for dogs and cats with torn ACLs that do not respond to non-surgical treatments. There are different surgical techniques used to repair ACL tears. The ideal technique will depend on the severity of the tear and your pet's overall health.
The following is a look at some of the most common surgical ACL repair options:
- Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO): The TPLO is a surgical procedure that involves cutting and rotating the tibia (shin bone) to change the angle of the joint. That helps to stabilize the knee, improving your pet's mobility and preventing further damage to the ACL.
- Tightrope: Tightrope is a minimally invasive surgical procedure that involves using synthetic ligaments to stabilize the knee. The synthetic ligaments are attached to the tibia and femur, which helps keep the joint in alignment.
- Extracapsular Repair: Extracapsular repair is a minor surgical procedure that involves tightening the ligaments around the knee joint. That helps to stabilize the knee and prevent further damage to the ACL.
What Are the Benefits of ACL Repair Surgery
The benefits of ACL repair surgery include the following:
- Pain relief
- Enhanced function of the knee joint
- Reduced risk of further damage to the knee joint
- Improved quality of life for your pet
Recovery from ACL Repair Surgery
The recovery time from ACL repair surgery will vary depending on the surgical technique. In general, it takes about 6-8 weeks for dogs and cats to fully recover from ACL repair surgery.
During the recovery period, your pet must wear a cone to prevent them from licking or chewing at the surgical site. They will also need to be on restricted activity for several weeks.
Our team at Trail Pet Hospital will provide you with post-operative care instructions to promote healing and ensure a successful recovery.
ACL Repair Near Me in Dallas, TX
If you suspect your pet may have a torn ACL, contact Trail Pet Hospital right away. Our team will evaluate your furry friend and recommend treatment for prompt relief. Early intervention can help prevent further damage to the joint. We invite you to call 972-629-9766 to schedule an appointment or request one online today!
Proudly serving patients in Dallas, Plano, The Colony, Addison, Richardson, and the surrounding communities.