Complications of TPLO Surgery, Dog Knee Braces are a Better Way!

When a human suffers a ligament tear they are sent to rehab and given orthotics and/or joint braces to help the injury heal more naturally prior to making the decision to go forward with an invasive surgical repair, and why are dogs not offered the same course of holistic therapy.    

We have long been asking these questions:

Why is dog knee bracing not the first course of action when they injure their cranial cruciate ligament (CCL)?  

Why is surgery the only option veterinarians are giving pet owners?  

Why are pet owners not given the information they need to make a good educated decision?

The complications of a Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO) surgery are a lot more common than most people are being told.  In fact a list of the most common complications can be found from a peer reviewed website called they are listed as follows:

1. Incisional complications: pain, swelling, infection, non healing incision.

2. Wound Infection 

3. Persistent Joint instability can last up to 2 years after surgery.

4. Further meniscal injuries

5. Patellar Desmopathy affects 80-100% of dogs after TPLO surgery

6. Delayed or incomplete healing

7. Decreased range of motion at the stifle joint can last up to 2 years.

8. Osteosarcoma (bone cancer) Dogs that have had surgery are 40 times more likely to develop bone cancer then a dog that did not undergo surgery.

Todays Veterinary Practice also states that “The recovery period after TPLO correction of a CCLR can often be long and frustrating.”   They go on to say that recovery time can last up to 2 years with complication affecting up to 25% of dogs.  

In 2018 the American Veterinary Medical Association reported that “Dogs with a history of TPLO were 40 times as likely to develop proximal tibial osteosarcoma as were dogs with no history of TPLO.”  And they concluded by stating “Results suggested that dogs with a history of TPLO were at increased risk of developing osteosarcoma.”  Pet owners and animal advocates need to start asking the important questions and demanding real answers. 

Our dog knee braces have helped hundreds of dogs heal from a CCL injury without expensive and dangerous surgery.  The down time with a dog knee brace is also very small compared to surgical repair as well as a lot more affordable.  TPLO surgery can range from $4000 to $7000 and our dog knee brace is $695, a fraction of the cost.  

Every brace is 100% custom made to fit your dog specifically.  We accomplish this by taking a cast of your dogs leg and turning it into a mold.  Then the custom orthotic is built around the mold of your dogs leg.  The dog knee brace accomplishes its task by preventing the drawer motion which is what causes the CCL to tear in the first place.  By preventing this motion the knee is allowed to rest and heal.  The knee brace can be worn for a few weeks to months until healed.  Some owners that have highly active dogs choose to have them worn whenever they play to prevent the injury from happening again.  

At Specialized Pet Solutions we care about you and your dog and want to help them heal as easily and affordably as possible.  Let us help you, help them, so they can get back to living their best life!