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19 May 2004

Cruciatus ligament - does it require surgery?
Dear Cybervet,

Our 7 year old X-Boxer has damaged the Cruciatus ligament in her left hind leg. Our vet reckons that she's not in any pain and that she doesn't require surgery. Can this be true? Sometimes she battles to get up and seems to try to keep her weight off the leg. While standing still she keeps putting her foot down gingerly, then lifting it again. On other occasions she'll go tearing around the garden or play quite rougly with our Rottie.

What is the usual procedure for this condition? If she's not in pain, why did our vet give her an anti-inflammatory when she was first diagnosed?

I'd really appreciate your advice, I'd hate to think that she's been in pain all these weeks and we've done nothing about it.

Thank you.
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Expert
CyberVet
cybervet

01 Jan 0001

The same as for the previous question, there is not necessarily a single answer which is correct. Several factors must be considered to provide the correct answer. However, in my opinion, if the cruciate ligament is completely ruptured resulting in instability of the knee, it requires surgical correction as soon as possible. Long-term, they may still develop arthritis, but surgery is definitely recommended. If the ligament is only partially ruptured, it is debatable. If you are unsure, request referral to a specialist surgeon in your area for the best advice, particular to your dog.

Dr Malan van Zyl
Veterinary Specialist Physician
Cape Town
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
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