Trauma to the carpus (wrist) can potentially cause damage to the major supporting structures (palmar fibrocartilage, ligaments and tendons) which can result in instability. This can lead to pain, abnormal wear that can cause pressure sores and poor quality of life for your pet. Depending on the level of disruption, the carpus (wrist) might need to be partially or completely fused.
Large breed dog suffering from total carpal collapse. The carpus was stabilised with two (orthogonal) plates. The dorsal plate is a Synthes locking hybrid plate and because the dog was quite large, it was supported by a locking plate placed medially.
Pain and dysfunction of the tarsal joint (ankle) can be quite debilitating. Trauma to the tarsus (ankle) can potentially cause damage to the major supporting structures (plantar fibrocartilage, ligaments and tendons) which can result in severe instability, pain, lameness, pressure sores and a poor quality of life. Severe osteoarthritis can also be quite painful and result in debilitating pain and lameness. Depending on the level of disruption/dysfunction, tarsus (ankle) fusion can be performed. This essentially converts a painful joint into a fused bone, much like a fractured bone heals after surgical stabilisation.
Partial tarsal arthrodesis in a dog using a laterally applied plate.
Pantarsal (complete) arthrodesis of the tarsus using a dorsally applied plate. This particular patient had a very active lifestyle for many years, which resulted in severe tarsal arthritis. This patient was painful, lame and was reluctant to move around. After recovery from surgery, this patient was pain free and much happier to resume a fairly normal lifestyle! 🙂