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  • Tibial growth plate fracture in a pup

Ralph, a 5 month old Yorkie pup, suffered a fracture of the proximal (top) end of his tibia (shin) bone just below his stifle (knee). This fracture involved the growth plate, the cartilage zone from which bone grows and which appears as a black line on x-rays near the ends of the long bones in growing dogs.

Although the fracture hadn’t displaced (moved) far, it had rotated so that the top of the tibia, the tibial plateau, was now very steep. Some have suggested that this could predispose to cruciate ligament disease later in life.

Ralph was pretty tough for a toy dog, but nevertheless, he was completely carrying the leg. So we reduced the fracture and fixed it two pins and a tension wire. Care was taken to avoid injury to the patella tendon. To give a sense of scale, the tension wire is only 0.8mm thick.

20th December 2015




Bernard, a 5 month old Staffy, presented with a fracture where the top end of his right tibia had broken from the shaft through the growth plate and "rocked back". The injury was 12 days old or so. We'd rather be fixing them with a day or three of the injury. But this one pulled together nicely with very little exposure. We never saw the fracture itself. A modest incision was made, just adequate to allow two pins to be placed "blindly". A tension wire was added, seated behind the patellar tendon and we checked the position of implants with intra-operative X-rays before closing the wound."

The xrays will need cropping to remove the name

The "bernard 3" one is the right side and the fractured side but only "bernard 2" is labelled as L for Left; that is the normal side.

Bernard 1 webBernard 2 web

bernard 3 webBernard web