BRAVERY AWARD – JULY 2022

by | Aug 10, 2022

People always have a fun time guessing what kind of dog Ava is.  She is in fact a 7-year-old Rottweiler, Labrador, Staffy and Ridgeback mix!  She is also the biggest sweetheart and a frequent visitor to the clinic.

Her latest visit was due to rupturing her right cruciate ligament this time, and unfortunately needing a second orthopaedic surgery, a very common occurrence for dogs with cruciate disease.  For a dog of Ava’s size, a technique called a TTA is performed.  TTA is the abbreviation for Tibial Tuberosity Advancement. This a surgical procedure used to treat cranial (or anterior) cruciate ligament rupture in the knee joints (stifle) of larger dogs. It involves cutting the top of the shin bone (the tibia), moving it forward and stabilising it in its new position.

Cranial cruciate ligament rupture is the most common cause of hind limb lameness in dogs. As a result, TTA and other operations that involve altering the shape of the shin bone, are common orthopaedic procedures performed in dogs and ones that we do frequently at our clinic.

Following rupture of the cranial cruciate ligament, the knee becomes unstable. When Ava would take weight on her hind leg for example, this instability allowed her shin bone to move forward relative to the thigh bone (femur). Her knee then feels as though it is ‘giving-way’ and this what caused her to be severely lame on that leg and present for treatment.
TTA surgery changes the shape of the knee so that the pull of the quadriceps muscle helps to stabilise the joint. The knee then feels stable for the dog when weight-bearing, despite the fact that the ligament has been ruptured and is not directly repaired.

The road to recovery after any surgery of this nature is not the easiest for our pets, and owner compliance is critical to follow a strict post operative plan.  Luckily for Ava, her resilience and beautiful, relaxed nature will ensure that her recovery will be speedy and successful, along with the help of her wonderful owners.  We look forward to seeing her for revisits for lots of pats and cuddles!

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