Surgical Treatment of Ruptured Cranial Cruciate Ligament
Does your pet have a torn ACL? Are you looking for an alternative way to repair your pet's knee problem, other than the "TPLO"? Tibial Tuberosity Advancement (TTA) is the latest method for repairing the canine knee with a torn ACL ligament.
Unfortunately, this condition does not repair itself and often requires surgical intervention. You may have been told that TPLO is the only way to rectify this situation. You may also have been told that lateral suture ("TightRope") works well for any dog, which is not always true. TTA or TPLO are better than lateral suture methods for many dogs. TTA works as equally well as TPLO, AND is easier to perform, less invasive, and your dog will recover faster after surgery.
When the ACL tears in your pet's knee, the tibia is able to slide forward when your pet stands on the leg, which is normally constrained by the torn ligament. This is very painful and causes arthritis in the joint. TTA works by changing the way the quadriceps muscle (the large muscles on the front of the leg) pull on the tibia. After a TTA, the muscle pulls the tibia back into its normal position when your dog stands on the leg. TPLO works in a similar way.
For those of you with smaller dogs, your doctor may have told you that TTA or TPLO is not the best choice for your smaller pets. We offer the Modified Maquet Procedure (a TTA alternative) for dogs that weight less than about 40 pounds of body weight. This procedure accomplishes the same thing as TTA, but is even less invasive. I also offer TPLO on dogs down to a weight of about 20 pounds.
Not every dog is a candidate for surgery for various reasons. If you are interested in alternative therapies for arthritis in dogs, please see our sections entitled Platelet Enhanced Therapy and/or Stem Cells/Regenerative Medicine. We use PET (or platelet rich plasma) and stem cell therapy for dogs that have had surgery to enhance the recovery, or for those that might be too old to undergo surgical correction. We are starting to use stem cell and plasma therapy on patients that have had surgery on one leg and MIGHT need it on the other leg. It may help prevent the leg from getting worse, or possibly help it get better.