TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

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lilangel
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TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby lilangel » Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:22 pm

Those of you who have successful TPLO stories, please tell them here. A successful TPLO story would entail only one leg blowing and a dog returning to a pain free highly active lifestyle, not a dog who is more or less still in constant pain or otherwise crippled. I know of no dogs, personally, who have made a full recovery after TPLO with no subsequent bilateral CCL compromise. My agenda is this: I believe TPLO to be a big money maker for vets and I think the surgery is sometimes... often, suggested inappropriately. I think TPLO is a dangerous and unnecessary procedure, especially for a family pet. I could be totally wrong. If you think I am then please tell me why and support your opinions with facts, preferably primary sources eg. What are your experiences?

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lilangel
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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby lilangel » Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:25 pm

Video of your success stories goes a LONG way so if you have an agility, flyball or FR dog not hopped up on Previcox, hauling donkey with a TPLO please post. After all, isn't that what TPLOs are for?

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby kaytenmags » Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:34 pm

lilangel wrote:I know of no dogs, personally, who have made a full recovery after TPLO with no subsequent bilateral CCL compromise.

not sure what you mean by this. you mean when one knee is fixed and the other knee is fine? :dunno:
when one knee goes, and is repaired, i think there's something like a 75% chance the other knee's going to go regardless of which surgery option you choose.

my dogs first TPLO surgery was flawless and made a perfect recovery. less than a year later she was running full tilt on the beach without getting sore. to this day, that knee has never showed signs of being sore.

her second knee however... gong show.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby Adrianne » Thu Nov 04, 2010 1:46 pm

My TD has a female Dutch who is 7 and after one surgery the second knee is failing her now. He's absolutely heart broken, she's not a couch dog... she's miserable not working.

I'm pretty sure one bad knee almost always means two bad knees. I haven't learned it being the same in the hips.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby Kingsgurl » Thu Nov 04, 2010 4:08 pm

Interesting thread. I would like to see vids/answers without the 'other knee' caveat, just out of curiousity. I get a few older dogs in who board with us who had TPLO years ago and they are all seem really arthritic in that knee, one is non weightbearing at all.
Martin had the now frowned upon traditional repair (both knees, same time Bi-Lateral Extra-Capsular repair) and I know he will start to show arthritis at some point, though at 4 years post op he is still going strong, knock on wood. I shied away from TPLO at my surgeons recommendation because of the invasiveness of the repair, but I find it facinating. I would bet I will be faced with the choice again at some point with another dog so post op success stories would be nice (or post op warnings, whichever)

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby BabyReba » Thu Nov 04, 2010 4:32 pm

I would also love to hear success stories ...

I'm really concerned about TPLO ... I know a couple of dogs that have had them, one of which returned to a full agility career after recovery; the other, however, never fully recovered and had limited mobility in one knee and almost never used the other, and both knees were TPLO ...

We did conservative management the first time Button was diagnosed with a torn CCL ... and almost a year later, that knee is weight bearing and was recently fully examined under sedation and the vet said it seems to be very stable, though there is some thick scar tissue and the knee will develop arthritis in the joint.

I'm leaning hard toward traditional repair for Button's newly blown knee ... if it goes well, we might look at a brace for the other knee. Or, as the vet pointed out, we could certainly consider TPLO on the other knee if we wanted to, if the traditional repair doesn't accomplish what we want it to.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby Savage Destiny » Thu Nov 04, 2010 8:41 pm

We didn't do TPLO on Riddle, we did the TTA, but it is the same concept, really. She's a little over a year out of surgery and going strong. She runs and plays as hard, if not harder, than she has done in a long time. I've wondered if her knee bothered her for a long time even before I noticed, and that's why she was "lazy" on hikes- now she runs harder on hikes than she has since puppyhood. I notice no difference in muscle mass between the "good" and "bad" knee legs. We did stop her agility career, not because of the surgery knee, but because of the risk to the other one. Blowing the other knee has nothing to do with surgery on one, if it goes it goes, and she's an "at risk" dog because she didn't blow hers in an accident, it was just running and jumping. So far her other knee has been good though, thank goodness.

I don't believe the surgeries are "money makers". My normal vet, who I adore and trust, who has told me MANY times I can buy things cheaper elsewhere than from him and sneaks me deals under the table, told me the TPLO or TTA is the best route for an active dog. Heck, he didn't even DO the surgery, he doesn't have surgery facilities (holistic vet). Still he thought it was the best option.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby Red » Thu Nov 04, 2010 9:48 pm

lilangel wrote:Those of you who have successful TPLO stories, please tell them here. A successful TPLO story would entail only one leg blowing and a dog returning to a pain free highly active lifestyle, not a dog who is more or less still in constant pain or otherwise crippled. I know of no dogs, personally, who have made a full recovery after TPLO with no subsequent bilateral CCL compromise.


I don't have a long time frame example to give you, V, but my Ice seems to be doing well so far. Her surgery was done November 2009 and after the recovery period I took things slow (still do). Not because she was displaying discomfort but because the surgery was expensive and I needed to pay it all before risking something else. Ice is not showing anything that make me think she in pain and the way she moves is rather fluent. Keep in mind, she is a dog who had a patella surgery at the age of 1 (opposite knee) and has mild HD so if I see problems in the future I might not be able to pinpoint them immediately. Ice never did sports because of her built so I can't offer that comparison.I can say though that she is capable of doing exactly what she was doing before the surgery.She'd clearly like to do more but I am still very afraid of another accident.

The orthopedic surgeon was the same that operated on her patella and since the results were excellent I decided to go with him again . When I brought the disk with the x-rays to him, for a consult, I asked them what was the best option for her and he said "absolutely a TPLO". I knew that there were other options out there, and one of my vets wanted to do something different, but I was afraid that to try them would have ended up with more down time and maybe not great results. Ice does not take down time lightly so I wanted one single surgery and be done with it.I'll never be done probably, but you know what I mean.I can take some videos of her moving or dragging light weights if you'd like, so you can see her range of motion, but you are probably looking for example of dogs doing sports only.

Just for fun, here is Ice being given a "new knee":

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby mtlu » Thu Nov 04, 2010 10:59 pm

Molly had a TPLO on her left knee at the end of December last year (around 3 yrs old at time of surgery) so also not long enough of a time frame to fully provide you with evidence you are looking for.

She had a partial tear (about 70% of ligament was gone according to the surgeon) but menicus was still intact. Our recovery was a bit long and she developed patellar tendonitis in the knee – water therapy kind of wasn't an option for us because Molly gets really stressed out by being immersed in water. Her muscle mass is even in both legs now (she definitely lost muscle mass in the left leg due to the tear.

We do allow her time to run off leash when/where it is safe and she went on some decent-length hikes over the summer (3-10 miles; a couple with pretty good elevation gain). We do monitor her activity closely but mostly due to concern for the other knee but I haven't seen anything "off" so far. We don't participate in any sports but used to go lure coursing once in a while (which may or may not have been the cause of the initial injury) and I may allow her to do sprint racing next year (no turns, just run in a straight line). I haven't brought her to sprint racing this year because she is a pet and we don't really do anything in terms of "conditioning."

Sure, both surgeons we went to recommended the TPLO and both are highly experienced in the procedure. One surgeon refused to do a certain kind of repair due to the high failure rate of the repair and perhaps I am naive but I felt like they both held themselves to high standards of making successful repairs on dogs. In the research I had done, it seemed like there was a high chance of the other knee blowing at some point regardless of which repair is made. I guess the advantages to some of the other repair options is that they can be redone but from a financial standpoint, surgeries/vet care is pretty expensive where I am and I didn't want to pay for a repair twice.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby pacopoe » Thu Nov 04, 2010 11:30 pm

Also not a great resource here as Paco died within a year of having his TPLO. We did a bilateral TPLO and I'd been doing two years of conservative management previous to his fully blowing both knees.

He did make somewhat of a full recovery. I, too, did a fairly slow recovery time as I did not want to risk anything. By the end he was going for runs again but his days of insane jumps had ended many years before his surgery and I mostly kept him with four-on-the-floor in any exercise we did. He did always favor one leg, though. He did weight bear on both legs, never noticeably favoring one, but the muscle mass on one side was far larger than the other despite having both legs operated on simultaneously.

If I had to do it over again I'd go for traditional repair. Since then, I've seen no difference between in the results of the different surgeries except the price. It seems to me diet and management has as much to do with a dog's success as the surgery itself, so might as well go with the simplest procedure.

Oh yeah, and surgery doesn't seem to have anything to do with whether or not the dog will blow its other knee, that seems to be mostly genetic (if one goes, chances are the other will at some point unless major lifestyle changes are made, hence the high rate of dogs blowing both knees).

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby lilangel » Thu Nov 04, 2010 11:40 pm

Well, the verdict is still out on whether ccl rupture is genetic. It seems to be pure guess work right now. I prefer to consider that the ccl rupture of the second knee is very often the result of extra wear and tear effect of that knee due to the affected knee. A dog compensating for a blown ccl puts a lot more weight onto the good ccl. An experienced PT can point this out to you. Slight changes in gait can do serious damage over time. Really noone knows.

I'm still reading through the thread... interesting stuff.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby pacopoe » Thu Nov 04, 2010 11:44 pm

lilangel wrote: I prefer to consider that the ccl rupture of the second knee is very often the result of extra wear and tear effect of that knee due to the affected knee. A dog compensating for a blown ccl puts a lot more weight onto the good ccl.


In this same school of thought, then three legged dogs would be blowing knees left and right. Maybe that's the case, but I don't know of enough three-legged dogs to find out if it's a huge issue or not.

Like you said, no one knows for sure, and there doesn't seem to be enough evidence here yet to support either side fully.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby Savage Destiny » Fri Nov 05, 2010 12:36 am

lilangel wrote:Well, the verdict is still out on whether ccl rupture is genetic. It seems to be pure guess work right now. I prefer to consider that the ccl rupture of the second knee is very often the result of extra wear and tear effect of that knee due to the affected knee. A dog compensating for a blown ccl puts a lot more weight onto the good ccl. An experienced PT can point this out to you. Slight changes in gait can do serious damage over time. Really noone knows.

I'm still reading through the thread... interesting stuff.


That said, proper aftercare and physical therapy can easily overcome that issue, since with the PT the dogs learn not to favor the leg and use it normally again. As I mentioned, Riddle has no difference in muscle mass between the "good" and "bad" legs. Really, that effect would be the same with or without surgery- without surgery the dog would still use the "good" leg more, and have a higher chance of blowing out that knee.

To put the "traditional" surgery in the same sort of light, since you're wary of the TPLO/TTA, a Rottie on a different dog forum had the traditional ACL repair done on her knee the day after Riddle had her TTA. While Riddle is doing fine at the six month mark, the Rottie's surgery already had to be redone due to it failing, and the other knee blew out.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby lilangel » Fri Nov 05, 2010 1:21 am

Point taken, rehab is very important but we are not talking about a perfect reality here where everything goes as it should and all dogs recover well and owners follow rehab protocols. Size must also be taken into account. A larger dog will always have more chance of complications throughout the life of the dog and a worse prognosis for recovery. As for the 3 legged dogs, I think that they compensate differently than a dog with 4 legs. Since up to 60% of the dog's weight can be supported by the front legs if all legs are present and in use, there is going to be more weight on the back end, whereas with 3 legs the single rear leg is going to be taking as little weight as the dog needs to use. Mobility is necessarily reduced as well compared to a dog with one bad rear leg.

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Re: TPLO SUCCESS STORIES

Postby kaytenmags » Fri Nov 05, 2010 11:18 am

she doesn't do any sports, but here's a video showing that she can still rip around the yard and play! even after two TPLO surgeries, one of which was not as smooth as it should have been.
(she's the dark dog)

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