TPLO (TIBIAL PLATEAU LEVELING OSTEOTOMY)
This is the preferred technique for stabilizing cranial cruciate ligament injuries (ACL tears) in the dog. Injury to the cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) in the dog typically causes instability and pain in the stifle. The joint is inspected to confirm the diagnosis and identify any meniscal injury. Approximately 1/3 of dogs with a CCL injury will also have a meniscal tear. The majority of meniscal tears in dogs require the removal of part of the meniscus.
The TPLO improves the pain and stability by neutralizing the forces that cause the instability. Dogs that have a complete tear of the CCL do not need a new ligament, such as a graft, to be placed. This means that they cannot tear the ligament again. In addition, studies have shown that dogs with partial tears of the CCL do not continue to tear the CCL after TPLO.
The TPLO involves making a cut is made in the bone and rotating the tibial plateau. A plate and screws are placed to help the bone heal in the new orientation. Once healed the implants are not needed anymore but are not typically removed.
Studies have shown that 20-40% of dogs that injure the CCL can injure the other side.