Patella luxation is a common problem in dogs. The patella (kneecap) luxates (dislocates) from the trochlea (the groove) in which it is supposed to run on the bottom end of the femur (thigh bone).
The patella usually luxates medially (towards the inside) but can luxate laterally (towards the outside). When t he latter occurs, it is usually in larger breeds.
We often need to create osteotomies (bone cuts) in the tibia (shin bone) or the femur. Sometimes the trochlea is not sufficiently deep to restrain the patella in its proper track. In the past the solution to this has been to deepen the groove using a range of techniques, most of which aim to save the articular cartilage.
A new approach is to build up the side of the ridge using an implanted strip held by screws.
We have acquired one of the first kits for this new technique and did our first case on 27th June on a juvenile spaniel with laterally luxating patellae in both knees. The left side was done first and the second side will be done a few weeks later. We have avoided osteotomies, at least for now, in this growing dog and this simplifies the worry and the aftercare for the owner in the post-op period.
We have now done this procedure on a few dogs and also a cat. To the best of our knowledge, this cat was only the second cat to ever have a Ridgestop fitted.
Our initial experience with all cases is very positive. So far, we’ve not had to combine Ridgestops with osteotomy techniques, though the makers are clear in saying that this is sometimes necessary. All patella to date have been stabilised with just the Ridgestop.
27th June 2014