Blog

TPLO Surgery in Dogs

If your dog is suffering from a torn ACL (CCL) our Cordova vets may recommend TPLO surgery to repair the injury and help to return your dog to an active lifestyle. 

Why is my vet recommending TPLO surgery for my dog?

TPLO or Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy surgery is often recommended for dogs suffering from a torn cranial cruciate ligament (CCL). 

What is the CCL?

The cranial cruciate ligament is the ligament that connects your dogs tibia (the bone below the knee) to their femur (the bone above their knee). In humans this ligament is known as the ACL or anterior cruciate ligament.

Unlike humans, because a dog's hind legs are always bent, the CCL is always a load bearing ligament. When the CCL is injured, your dog's knee becomes unstable and painful.

Symptoms of a CCL Injury

Symptoms of a CCL injury in dogs can appear suddenly but typically develop gradually. The most common signs of an CCL injury are:

  • Stiffness (most noticeable after rest, following exercise).
  • Difficulty rising and jumping.
  • Hind leg lameness and limping.

Continued activity on a mildly injured CCL will cause the injury to worsen and symptoms to become more pronounced.

Approximately 60% of dogs with an CCL injury in one leg will go on to injure the other knee soon afterwards.

TPLO - Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy Surgery

Rather than replacing the CCL with an artificial ligament through an Extracapsular Repair, TPLO surgery eliminates the need for the CCL ligament altogether by reconfiguring the knee. 

TPLO surgery involves making a curved cut in the tibia from the front to the back, then rotating the tibial plateau (top section of the tibia) backward until the angle between the tibia and femur are appropriately level. A metal plate is then used to stabilize the two sections of tibia in the desired positions while the bone heals in its new configuration.

Recovery from TPLO Surgery

Healing from TPLO surgery is typically very quick, many dogs will be walking on the leg within 24 hours of surgery, and most will be bearing moderate amounts of weight on the leg within 2 weeks. 

That said, it is extremely important to severely limit your dog's activity for a minimum of 4 months following TPLO surgery. Following your vet's instructions is essential in order to avoid further injury to the leg while your dog is recovering from the surgery. 

Your dog should be able to return to full physical activity, including running and jumping, approximately 6 months after surgery.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

To find out more about TPLO surgery to repair your dog's CCL or ACL injury, contact our Cordova vets today.

TPLO surgery to repair CCL injury in dogs, Cordova Animal Hospital

Looking for a vet in Cordova and greater Memphis area?

We're always accepting new patients, so contact our veterinary hospital today to book your pet's first appointment.

Contact Us

Related Articles View All

What causes diarrhea in dogs & how is it treated?

Diarrhea in dogs is one of the most distressing symptoms pet parents often have to deal with. Our Cordova vets know that if your canine companion has diarrhea you need a cure right now! Below are some common causes of diarrhea in dogs and what pet parents can do to help resolve this messy health problem.

Urinary Tract Infections & Other Urinary Conditions in Cats

Although urinary tract infections are far less common in cats than in dogs, our Cordova vets often see a number of other feline urinary tract diseases in cats. Today we share more about UTIs and other urinary tract conditions in cats.

Bladder Infection In Dogs - Signs & What To Do

Bladder infections and other bladder issues are as common in dogs as they are in people and just as painful. In today's post our Cordova vets share the signs that your dog may have a bladder infection and what to do.

Outer, Middle & Inner Ear Infection in Cats

Although ear infections are less common in cats than in dogs when they do occur they can be an indication of a serious underlying health condition. Today our Cordova vets explain some of the causes, symptoms and treatments for outer, middle and inner ear infections in cats.