At Pittwater Animal Hospital we have a visiting specialist surgeon Dr Eugene Buffa, who comes to our hospital with his team to perform TPLO operations. This is a particularly successful surgical option for dogs with cruciate injuries of their knees which involves remodelling the lower part of the knee.
Dr Heidi Furber or Dr Jill King will usually be giving pre and post surgery advice. They will discuss the strict restriction of activity that is mandatory after surgery and will recommend aftercare to get your dog back to better mobility.
Patients will need a general anaethetic and stifle xray some time prior to the day of surgery. This is to examine for other complications, assess the extent of arthritis and for Dr Buffa to get measurements for the implants.
On the day of surgery your dog will be kept on iv fluids and pain relief all day and overnight, with most dogs staying two nights in hospital. Dr Buffa and his team arrive and perform the surgery in our dedicated sterile-surgery. A Pittwater Nurse is in charge of monitoring all aspects of the anaesthetic under the supervision of one of our veterinarians, throughout the procedure and recovery period.
On completion of surgery the wound is sutured and a light adhesive dressing is applied. This will mostly remain in place until suture removal but is fine to come off as long as your dog leaves the wound alone.
Xrays are taken at the end of the procedure to ensure correct placement of the implant. These are repeated 10 weeks after surgery.
Your dog will be sent home with pain relief and antibiotics one to two days after surgery. We ask you to contact us at any time if you are concerned about progress after surgery.
As part of the procedure we now have a session of Rehab with Fran from 3 Monkeys. Fran likes to meet with owners ten days after their dogs surgery to start the recovery process. If rehab is helpful more sessions can be booked through Pittwater Animal Hospital for Fran’s rehab.
Ten weeks after surgery you dog will have a follow up xray at Pittwater Animal Hospital to make sure the implant is stable and that healing is well underway.
Full healing will take 3-6 months but the results are superior to other management of cruciate disease.
The TPLO procedure involves changing the shape of the lower bone of the knee (the tibia) and stabilising it with an implant that will remain in the bone for life.
When your dog goes home you must restrict his or her activity as outlined in our information package, for 10 weeks.
Ten days after surgery the sutures are removed and we start a four week course of cartrophen injections. These are given to try to improve joint health and minimise future arthritis. A repeat course of injections is recommended each year, for the rest of your dogs life.
Many Pittwater dogs have had their knees reconstructed in this manner at Pittwater Animal Hospital and we have been very pleased with the results.
The cost of the procedure is all inclusive from surgery day. This includes anaesthetic, hospitalisation, medication, specialist surgery, cartrophen injection course, post op xrays on the day and in 6 weeks, rehab with Fran plus all rechecks at Pittwater Animal Hospital.
For at-home care after any procedure at PAH look at our After Care page.
If you would like to discuss surgical options for cruciate injuries for your pet, please make an appointment preferably with Dr Heidi Furber or Dr Jill King
For further information about other joint conditions refer to our arthritis page.
Please read all the fact sheets below before you book in for surgery.