Riley’s TPLO Surgery

I just got off the phone with Riley’s surgeon, Dr. Dassler.  I talked to him for 10 minutes, so that was kinda nice.  Her surgery went well and she did well with the anesthesia and everything.  He said the normal angle in a dog’s knee is between 28 and 32 degrees.  Hers was 37 degrees, so it was pretty steep.  That predisposes them to having CCL (Cranial Cruciate Ligament) tears.  He also said the angle is also pretty steep in the other knee (her left knee) and that she will most likely have a tear in that knee sometime in the next year or so.  Grrrrrrreat.  Gives us plenty to look forward to.

Her ligament ended up not being completely torn like they had thought, but was “hanging on for dear life” by about 2 filaments.  So practically torn.  So they still were able to do the TPLO (Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotemy) surgery.  He said her meniscus (the sort of padding in the knee joint, I think) was not torn, so that’s good.  He left the ligament and meniscus in and the ligament may go ahead and tear the rest of the way or may not, but the knee is fixed anyway, so it won’t be a big deal–she just may limp around for a day or two when it does tear.

He is usually able to correct dog’s knees to a 5 degree angle with this surgery and, because of her steep 37 degree angle, was able to correct Riley’s to 11 degrees.  She should be good to go with the 11 degrees though and he said he’s pleased with the result.

Riley is now the bionic doggie and has a stainless steel plate in her leg and 6 shiny new screws into her bone!  I imagine she must now look something like this:

She is apparently still all doped up (which is most likely a good thing at this point) from the anesthesia and is on morphine right now.  Lucky duck!  Anyway, if all goes well, she should be able to come home tomorrow and begin her 8 weeks of crate rest.  Dr. Dassler said he has 2.5 pages of instructions for me–woohoo!  🙂
Thanks for all the puppy and human prayers and crossed paws (and fingers) for Riley!  I know she appreciates all of her bloggy pals and I most certainly appreciate all of the support from you all!

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