Stages of TPLO Surgery and Procedure

Since TPLO surgery, also known as dog knee surgery or dog CCL/ACL surgery, can be quite an intense procedure that has possibilities of significant complications, special care must be taken pre, during, and post procedure to provide a dog with optimal recovery.

Before TPLO Surgery

Prior to surgical procedure, any dog undergoing TPLO surgery should be throughly vetted and examined to determine and assess the degree to the need for the operation. After the initial assessment has been completed, further palpations are required under anesthesia. These palpations will aid in the detection of cranial cruciate ligament stability.

A careful usage of X-rays for stifle and tibia will help to expose the occurrence and intensity of osteoarthritis along with the angle of the tibial plateau. The X-rays provides a clear picture of the bones. It also brings attention to the cut on the bone, the rotation of the angle required, and the required size of the plate for stabilizing the bone.

During TPLO Surgery

Whenever the cranial cruciate ligament, also referred to as CCL or ACL (anterior cruciate ligament), is ruptured, and the dog attempts to place or bear weight on the leg, the femur bone slips on the backside of the tibia. This slip results in the rubbing of the bones, causing pain and inflammation, making for a highly reduced and uncomfortable quality of life. The dog will tend to favor the strong leg to overcompensate and avoid putting weight on injured leg.

To address CCL/ACL dog injuries, TPLO surgery is performed by cutting the tibial plateau (i.e., the part of the tibia meeting the stifle joint) and rotating it so that sloping plateau changes it position roughly 5 degrees from the horizontal plane. The cutting of tibial plateau will inhibit the femur from gliding down on the tibial plateau slope even when your dog attempts to put some weigh on its once injured knee.

TPLO surgery, lasting roughly 2-3 hours at most, is often the best fast-acting treatment of the cranial cruciate ligament breakage compared to any other process.

Post TPLO Surgery

The post-operative care of TPLO surgery is essential as recovery and restoration may take months. It’s important to strictly following post-operative care instructions as instructed by your dog’s veterinarian.

In addition, painkillers and antibiotics for your dog are likely prescribed and advised at the time of discharge to keep the pain minimal and manageable prior, during, and post rehab.

There should be minimum exercise until the tissues and bone heals. After a few days, enhancing the rehab and training exercises slowly will help to reduce pain and possible scar tissue. Be sure to keep your dog from licking the wound using necessary TPLO supplies, such as cones and lick braces.

Most importantly, regularly scheduled follow-ups should be attended to avoid any complications, such as screws and plates loosening, infection, or post-operative damage to the cartilage.