Torn CCLs in 3 year old dog. Operation Best???

LouiseRF

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OPERATION OR NOT??

My 2-year dog has been having difficulty sitting normally. She went for x-rays the other day and she was diagnosed with torn CCLs in both knees. The vet wants her to see a surgeon. I was told that IF she had an operation, her knees could only be repaired to around 75%/85% normalcy. I was also informed that IF she did not have an operation within 6 months, her body would try to repair the injuries and her knees would be far less than 75% normal. In the past, I had two other dogs with torn CCLs as well and I opted not to operate and used PT and homeopathy… in old age, they both had bad arthritis in their knees. Please let me know what you think. Her report is below if that can help with your advise. THANKS

PS Local vet has put her on Galliprant for pain. I’d rather use something else. In the HA 12/20 chat, one of the doctors in the forum mentioned CBD and someone else mentioned C60 to remove oxidative stress so the body can start to heal itself… Please elaborate on these two ideas too. Thank you!!


Comments: One lateral view of the lumbar spine, a lateral view of each stifle and 2 ventrodorsal views of the pelvis are provided. There is moderate bilateral stifle joint effusion/capsular thickening with mild degenerative new bone formation visible at the tibial plateau and fabellae bilaterally. The pelvis and coxofemoral joints are within normal limits. No abnormalities are seen in the included portions of the spine. The included portions of the abdomen and thorax are within normal limits.

Conclusions: The changes in the stifles are compatible with chronic bilateral instability and secondary degenerative joint disease/osteoarthritis. Cranial cruciate ligament injury is the most common cause, and is the most likely differential. Luxating patella (despite the normal patellar location in this study) meniscal damage, collateral ligament injury or other cause of chronic stifle instability remain potential differentials or comorbidities.
 
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aruna

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GinnyW

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Please see this link: finndvm.com

Look for the link to stifle/ACL injuries. This is our integrative vet, who has an amazing record of healing these conditions. There are some great videos, too. Her approach varies with the dog and condition, and the info can help you decide your best course. Please feel free to use my name if you contact her. I have seen wonders there:)
 

Dr. Jeff

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Hi Louise!

Conclusions: The changes in the stifles are compatible with chronic bilateral instability and secondary degenerative joint disease/osteoarthritis. Cranial cruciate ligament injury is the most common cause, and is the most likely differential.

Ah, so possibly more of a "chronic" issue. In which case, surgery might only help transiently.

Yes, CBDs (especially a potent CBDA research-proven supplement like Ellevet) can be super supportive and helpful while her body does its' job.


Regarding surgery, I wonder if there was an observed injury?
 

Dr. Sara

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Dear Louise,
You don't mention how large your dog is. Medium and small dogs typically do better with conservative (non-surgical) treatment than large and giant dogs. This is because many cruciate injuries occur because the joint angles are abnormal. In a large or giant breed, the abnormal angle creates greater stress on the joint, in addition to the stress of a heavier body, so it is harder to obtain joint comfort without surgical correction of the abnormal angles.

However, I have seen large and giant breeds do remarkably with holistic treatment; so much depends on the individual, the treatment plan, and the ability to build up the muscles to support the joints. As Dr. Jeff notes, with a chronic instability, already showing degenerative joint disease (DJD), surgery will be less likely to resolve the problem completely.

Whatever treatment you choose, it will be essential to keep your girl slim and well muscled life long. She already has DJD, so excessive weight on the joints will cause more pain.

I am a human with a traumatically torn cruciate in one knee for over 20 years; I have had no surgery or conventional treatment for it. Unless I do something really stupid, such as jumping backward on the affected leg while it is planted, I am pain free, and have no obvious arthritic changes in the knee. I attribute this to prompt physical therapy, continuing chiropractic, weight control, and exercise. Dogs are more likely to do the 'something stupid' because they react in the moment; all the same, there is a lot you can do to help your girl!
I hope this is helpful!
Dr. Sara
 

LouiseRF

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Hi Louise!



Ah, so possibly more of a "chronic" issue. In which case, surgery might only help transiently.

Yes, CBDs (especially a potent CBDA research-proven supplement like Ellevet) can be super supportive and helpful while her body does its' job.


Regarding surgery, I wonder if there was an observed injury?
no observed injuries
 

LouiseRF

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Please see this link: finndvm.com

Look for the link to stifle/ACL injuries. This is our integrative vet, who has an amazing record of healing these conditions. There are some great videos, too. Her approach varies with the dog and condition, and the info can help you decide your best course. Please feel free to use my name if you contact her. I have seen wonders there:)
Is this the link that you wrote about in the chat "Louise, i have a link for you, but can’t get to it just now. If I can’t get it in here, check the forum afterwards," or is there another resource? Thank you.
 

LouiseRF

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Thank you for your help
Dear Louise,
You don't mention how large your dog is. Medium and small dogs typically do better with conservative (non-surgical) treatment than large and giant dogs. This is because many cruciate injuries occur because the joint angles are abnormal. In a large or giant breed, the abnormal angle creates greater stress on the joint, in addition to the stress of a heavier body, so it is harder to obtain joint comfort without surgical correction of the abnormal angles.

However, I have seen large and giant breeds do remarkably with holistic treatment; so much depends on the individual, the treatment plan, and the ability to build up the muscles to support the joints. As Dr. Jeff notes, with a chronic instability, already showing degenerative joint disease (DJD), surgery will be less likely to resolve the problem completely.

Whatever treatment you choose, it will be essential to keep your girl slim and well muscled life long. She already has DJD, so excessive weight on the joints will cause more pain.

I am a human with a traumatically torn cruciate in one knee for over 20 years; I have had no surgery or conventional treatment for it. Unless I do something really stupid, such as jumping backward on the affected leg while it is planted, I am pain free, and have no obvious arthritic changes in the knee. I attribute this to prompt physical therapy, continuing chiropractic, weight control, and exercise. Dogs are more likely to do the 'something stupid' because they react in the moment; all the same, there is a lot you can do to help your girl!
I hope this is helpful!
Dr. Sara
Luna is a 42lb, thin, muscular, shy, fast runner! She is part Terrier, Siberian Husky, and Chow Chow. I am still so torn, no pun intended, about how to help her best. The local kind vet is adamant that she needs surgery in both knees. I would hate to put her through the surgeries and only want the best for her! The local vet says that she is so young, and the very best option is to operate. Some people in the HA group recommended water therapy but Luna is extremely afraid of water.
 

LouiseRF

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Is this the link that you wrote about in the chat "Louise, i have a link for you, but can’t get to it just now. If I can’t get it in here, check the forum afterwards," or is there another resource? Thank you.
I just followed the link above and it seems that I'd have to travel to the state of Washington to have her evaluated and possibly fitted for braces on both legs? Thanks
 

GinnyW

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I just followed the link above and it seems that I'd have to travel to the state of Washington to have her evaluated and possibly fitted for braces on both legs? Thanks
No, she works with a lot of vets all over. I would imagine you could speak with her and get some contacts. I know that OrthoPets, the company that manufactures the braces she often recommends are not local to us, in any case. You could contact them for a more local vet.
 

GinnyW

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I'd think that would depend upon her response, her ability to heal correctly - and anything that influences that, such as excellent nutrition, good intent on both your parts, support with homeopathy and other modalities...The body is pretty amazing, and she MAY be able to regenerate all the right bits. If not, at least these wonderful braces would let her move freely and happily for a lifetime, no?
 

AlysonR

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I had a dog with a *partially* torn ACL who wore a brace for maybe 6 months. It allowed scar tissue to build up around the knee to stabilize it. That knee turned out to be quite a bit thicker than the other, but there didn't seem to be any other consequence. As she tore it rather late in her life, an operation wasn't really in the cards.
 

LilF

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LilF

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@aruna thanks for posting those links... As I was reading the what I missed email I "tripped" onto this and it was very timely. My JJ, 15, seems to always have to poop in a big mound of snow. So today as I was reading this email, he had climbed onto a pile and his foot sunk down into about 20 inches of snow and hurt himself. He could not put weight on the leg and he was panting and looked like he had seen a ghost, was so scared. His leg collapsed as he tried to get up a small step to go back into the house. I was frightened he broke something. So I heard enough of the webinar on homeopathy and thought I would mix up some Arnica 6C that I had on hand. I don't know much about it all but Dr. Sara's presentation told me enough to "wing it." Mixed some up and gave him a out 3 doses within about a hour. He quieted down and rested on one of his beds. Miraculously after the 3 doses he got up and walked to his water bowl and seems fine since. He cannot take NSAIDS due to his liver and kidney values but this was a very timely email. Your links were probably a gift from the universe showing up when I needed them to try... All is well tonight....

One question... @Dr. Jeff mentions CBD oil above. How is that given when homeopathy is used---an hour later? I gave the CBD several hours later. Is there a rule of thumb? I give him the CBD oil orally on a spoon and wipe his upper lip with it. It was an interesting webinar , 9-30-19. I do not understand strengths but seems arnica has worked for me and my dog.
 

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