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Hip Dysplasia

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by smskar, Jul 30, 2009.


  1. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Hello all

    Our 8yr old JRT has been having mobility problems recently so we decided to have her hips xrayed.
    Her right hand side hip socket has worn away and the ball of the bone has partly disintegrated. She is currently on Flexicam (reduced dose) and glucosamine and she has been doing really well but we thought we should do the xray just to see where the problem lies.

    The vet has sent the xrays to an orthopaedic specialist and we are awaiting to hear from him. I believe they will say that we should operate her hip but I would like to get some feedback from anyone whose dog has had similar health issues.

    Without the medication she can't walk very far, she is slim by the way. We rehomed her 8-9 months ago as her owner has passed away and a family member told me that Molly had her hip replaced when she was 2. The xray only showed some cloudy bits around the socket, so the vet said that perhaps they had tried to form a socket but due to wear and tear it was worn away.

    Please do share your views on this as I am not sure what is the best thing to do.

    Many thanks

    Maria
     
  2. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    it sounds like she needs a new hip - theres very little you can do about this apart from operate. Just a matter of keeping her exitement down on her good days so that further damage isnt done - and give her a good long recovery period after shes had the surgery :)
     
  3. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Thanks for your reply.

    I too think that surgery is probably the best option for her case.
     
  4. james1

    james1 PetForums VIP

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    i have a problem with my older dog and this has been ruled out under xray - there should be people on though who know a little more about it first hand ;)
     
  5. RebeccaArmstrong

    RebeccaArmstrong PetForums Senior

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    Hello
    It does sound like surgery is going to be the best option - for small dogs the recovery is easier and better! There are a couple of different surgeries that can be used and your vet will explain each one. one of the most important things with HD is making sure the muscle tone is good around the hips as the muscles support the joint and are important, what often happens is a HD dog used the front more than the rear so they can experience muscle wastage.

    Hvae you ever taken her for hydrotherapy, this makes a huge difference and i would recommend you use this both to recover post operative but also that you take her before to get used to it and to help with the muscles in the rear end, if you can find a canine massage therapist locally as well that makes a big difference as well - where are you based?

    If you want any more information I am happy to share what i know about these operations (i am a hydrotherapist / myotherapist and physio) and work alot with HD dogs and rehabilitating post surgery!
     
  6. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Hello thank you very much for your message

    I am based in Inverness.

    The vet mentioned that there is some muscle wastage and that perhaps we should consider hydrotherapy although she didn't provide much info about it. I will have a look at google for more info but if there is anything particularly important that you want to point out by all means please do.

    The vet also said that it could be Legg-Perthes disease and in this case instead of THP they could remove part of the femural bone? What I don't understand about this type of operation is that they remove the source of pain of course, but the dog still won't have a proper hip joint, hence won't she put a lot of pressure on her "good" joint? Also she will still be relying on her muscles to support the " bad" leg so there won't be fixing anything but just removing what is causing her pain?

    She was running like mad yesterday and I was trying to get her to slow down. She looked so happy to be out and about again, she even jumped over her sister (she is not normally that hyper!) which is a long legged JRT and that was with no painkillers for 3 days, just glucosamine. This is why I am not sure whether operating her is the right choice...

    Thanks

    Maria
     
  7. RebeccaArmstrong

    RebeccaArmstrong PetForums Senior

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    Hello
    There is a good hydropool in Aberdeen - the main thing is that you want to ensure that they are qualified (you can open a hydropool without qualification which is just scary).

    The FHO operation (femoral head osteotomy) is very sucessful especially in smaller dogs, and whilst it is a major operation it is quite straightforward and your dog will recover fine especially as he is so small!) Removing the head of the femur sounds extreme but the body is amazing, it will repair itself and grow scar tissue to replace it - most importantly the bones will not rub so it wont be painful once healed ... the most important thing is cage rest, the vet will advise this post operatively and it is so important that you do this, by cage rest it is literally 24 hours a day except for toilet and ideally you shoudl carry to garden and stand him to do his business, even if he can walk please dont let him until the period of cage rest is up (normally 6 - 8 weeks but vet will advise) - i knwo if sounds awful and extreme but honestly thats the most important bit. Then you need to get him to hydro ... very small amounts as often as you possible can - daily if possible for the first week or so , once the healing has happened you need to get mobility back into the joint ... i would take her now a few times, just so she gets used to the water and the life jacket etc - often dogs can feel more nervous of new things post operation when feeling a bit vunerable

    The other thing is becuase there is an injury to the joint - she will get arthritis in it later on, you should think about getting her on glucosamine straight away - plus Aloe Vera is good for this as well. Id also make sure she has a good bed - orthopaedic so it is supporting her well and magnetic collars are also good for arthritis

    If you want to ask me any questions feel free to email me rebecca.armstrong@brightpaws.co.uk

    It will be ok, of all the operations for a small dog i think this is the best for them both interms of recovery and post surgery mobility xx
     
  8. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Hi Rebecca

    Thanks for the info. I had a look at the CHA website and I found a couple of clinics in Aberdeen. It takes 3 hrs by car to get there though so we won't be able to have regular sessions :((( I am sure when I was looking for training classes in Inverness I came across a company that were also offering hydrotherapy but they are not registered.

    Molly looked sad today. I know it sounds daft but she wasn't happy. She was very slow and when she ran a wee bit she was all over the place. She was sitting a lot at the park too instead of running around like usual. I will put her back on Flexicam as of tomorrow (she had an upset tummy that is why I took her off it).

    Keeping her caged after the operation sounds very cruel indeed. She will think she's been punished and it won't be easy as she has a sister, but I understand that it is a must.

    I guess we just have to wait to hear from the specialist and take it from there. I am scared about the expenses involved but hopefully the insurance will cover for it.

    Thank you for sending me your contact details. When I hear from the specialist I'll let you know what's the verdict.

    Many thanks,

    Maria
     
  9. cassie01

    cassie01 PetForums VIP

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    my rottie suffers with both hip and elbow dysplacia. it was very bad as a pup and in the first year we had him he had several operations, hes six now, we kept the weight off him and reduced the amount of exercise he has ie no hill walking, climbing the stairs, agility etc and hes six now and hasnt been on meds since he was about a year and half old. he only has the occassional limp if he over does it but not often or for long.

    I would have the surgery as it did wonders for ours and keep off the weight, feed low energy food and be careful about the amount and types of exercise, you might want to try hydotherapy too as this will build up the muscle without putting strain on the joints, some insurances do cover this.
     
  10. RebeccaArmstrong

    RebeccaArmstrong PetForums Senior

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    Hi
    it wont be long, she will be back up and running soon. Its worth taking the time to get the recovery right - i know its awful cage resting them but think of it as a short time of discomfort for a lifetime of mobility, she will recover better and prevent any further problems .. once its all done she wil be fine and much happier. Honestly it will all work out fine

    Hydro wise, you are better with a qualified pool, however if you are so far then you might have to go for a more local one, again if you want to chat about what to ask and what to look for drop me a line

    Insurance does normally cover it - keep in touch
     
  11. Sleeping_Lion

    Sleeping_Lion Banned

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    If you take a look at the lab-health website (just google it) they have good information on hip dysplasia and the various operations dogs can have.

    Indie, my older bitch, had a cruciate problem, and had to have hydro. Whilst it might be important that the hydro place has qualified staff, you need to ensure the qualifications mean something. Although a Labrador, Indie isn't a natural swimmer, she's far too prissy for that (unless it's a heated swimming pool with a cocktail bar of course), and the only place that the insurance would pay for was quite frankly not worth it, the only thing they did was give her more of an aversion to water. I stopped the course in the end as it wasn't doing her any good, they didn't record sessions correctly or assess her as she was going along, they just wanted to follow a set schedule of sessions increasing in length and difficulty.

    I'd actually prefer to pay for hydro than ever take her to a similar place again.
     
  12. RebeccaArmstrong

    RebeccaArmstrong PetForums Senior

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    Hi yes i totally agree, Hydro is the best thing in the world but unfortunately it is not regulated and anyone can buy a pool and set it up and just do it with no real knowledge. TO be honest all CHA accreditation gives you is assurance that the water is tested and the hydro person has First Aid - so it is definetly a good starting point but not the most important thing. I woudl recommend that you find someone qualified to do hydro and they should be working in partnership with your vet throughout - getting their consent and working with them to ensure that the treatment is aligned to the post operative vet care. You also need someone in the water with your dog, because you are rehabilitating a joint the hydrotherpist needs to be able to create resistance on that joint to help build it which is impossible out of water (to be honest i would never ever use a hydro pool that didnt get in the water with the dogs)
     
  13. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Hello all

    Thank you very much for your comments.

    The day I saw the xrays at the vet I was in denial. A relative of the previous owner had told us that Molly was born with some sort of hip problem and they waited until she was 2 before she had a hip operation. So I thought that the vet was going to say that Molly had developed arthritis as a result of the hip op. So her needing surgery came as a shock. But I have seen how sad and miserable she looks and she can't walk properly so now I can't wait to get the surgery scheduled.

    I am going to see the vet tomorrow (to hand in the claims form) and at the same time I will ask her about hydrotherapy options in Inverness. She mentioned it so perhaps there is a hydro pool in the surrounding area.

    I know it sounds daft, but if the nearest pool is in Aberdeen would it help at all if I bought a life jacket for Molly and practised in the bathtub? I found some info online and as long as it won't do her any harm, I am happy to do it if there is no other better option. Although she doesn't swim in the river / lake, she is a joy to bath. That is probably coz she enjoys the warmth of the water. Creature comforts!

    I'll let you know what the vet says.

    Thank you

    Maria
     
  14. RebeccaArmstrong

    RebeccaArmstrong PetForums Senior

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    HI
    I am sure there is a hydro pool near you, it is better to go to the pool where she can swim and build herself up. The bath is a good idea but wouldn't really work to be honest, the dog needs to be able to move in the water to build up the muscles in that area.
    If there is no hydropool you could look at a canine physiotherapist or myotherapist who will also be able to help you rehabilitate

    Speak to your vet and see what they say

    I would also recommend you get a magnetic collar whcih will really help as well

    becky
     
  15. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Hi Rebecca

    I spoke to the vet and unfortunately the nearest pool is in Aberdeen DOH!

    I ordered an Armadillo magnetic collar, thanks for the tip. I hope it helps her a wee bit.

    Thanks,

    Maria
     
  16. curluscat

    curluscat PetForums Junior

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    Hi, I've followed this thread with interest and I hope I can offer some advice. My JRT/Border terrier was diagnosed with Legge-Perthe disease at just 6months old and a THP was recommended. Obviously I was devastated, the 3 months post.op period sounded impossibly cruel. However I went ahead with the op (fortunately no problem with insurance - Sainsbury's), and Dolly had the new micro-hip on 10th June. I can't pretend the first few weeks were easy - her back legs were tied together 'hobble style' for 3 weeks and kept to her crate except for the toilet, then the hobble was removed but she was confined to her crate for a further 7 days. She coped with it all remarkably well (much better than I did, lol) but there's no doubt it is heartbreaking to see your pet confined in such a way and not be able to explain the reason why.

    However ............... Dolly is now on 3x35 minute walks per day, everyone's delighted with her progress and recovery. At the weekend we can let her off the lead on the flat and then on September 10th she will be back to better than normal, off lead exercise, retrieval etc etc.

    I'm so sorry to read about your JRT's problems and hope that Dolly's experience helps you make the right decision.

    BTW, luckily, When Dolly was 7 weeks old I registered her with Buckley House Vets in Hucknall, Nottinghamshire which is, just by chance, a renowned canine orthopaedic centre in the East Midlands so she got the very best of treatment by Graham Oliver and his team. I realise though that this is much too far away for Molly.

    Dolly's Very Grateful Mum.
     
  17. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Hello and thanks for your email.

    I am sorry that Dolly had to go through this but I am glad she is recovering so well. I bet you were more stressed out over the whole thing than her :)))

    Although I can't wait to hear from the orthopaedic and hopefully arrange for the surgery, I am dreading it at the same time. It is not just the confinement that I am dreading it is also how to manage with 2 inseparable sisters. But if this is what needs to be done for Molly to get better, then it has to be done.

    I am with Tesco insurance by the way (cover for life). They took their time to process the 1st claim but we got the money eventually...

    Will let you know when I hear from the orthopaedic.

    Thanks again for your post. It is good to know that others have been through this and the outcome was pretty good.

    Maria
     
  18. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Hi there

    We got the report on the xrays from the specialist yesterday. She suffers from "severe right hip pathology. The cause is not clear but it may be possible that she suffered from Perthe's disease when she was young, leading to sever osteoarthritis."

    "The treatment options are conservative (NSAIDs, weight control etc) and surgery. Total hip replacement would be technically challenging in a dog with such chronic degenerative joint disease and the degree of subluxation that is present (1 1/2 cms)."

    He mentions the excision arthroplasty as an option but doesn't give any further info (the vet will speak to them again).

    He concludes that since Molly is not experiencing significant problems from the hip, perseverance with conservative management may be appropriate.

    I was not expecting this folks; I thought the specialist would say yeap bring her in. I am glad in a way that they are not money grabbers! But it kind of leave us back to square 1....

    Thanks,

    Maria
     
  19. dinks

    dinks PetForums Senior

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    Hehe - you will find that orthopaedic surgeons will only operate if it is going to benefit the patient.Its great news that she is not bad enough to have to have surgery at the moment.Can i ask who the specialist is if you dont mind?At least now you have an answer to the severity of her arthritis and options to consider.:D
    Have you discussed hydrotherapy with your vet?I hope she continues to do well xx
     
    #19 dinks, Aug 11, 2009
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2009
  20. smskar

    smskar PetForums Member

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    Hiya

    If we stop giving her painkillers she won't be able to walk. Unfortunately, she has deteriorated in the last few weeks, so she is not doing that great... She has sudden bursts of energy but she quickly gets tired.

    We live in Inverness but the specialist is based in Fife (East Neuk Veterinary Clinic). I can send you their full address and contact numbers if you want to.

    Thanks,

    Maria
     
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