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Old 03-08-2009, 06:26 PM   #1
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Question Luxating Patella Surgery - Do Both Knees At The Same Time? Or One?

As some of you know, I will be scheduling Tatum's LP surgery tomorrow. The actual SURGERY won't be tomorrow...but tomorrow is the day that I am going to call and schedule it. I HATE THIS and I am more nervous than I can even put into words, but I CANNOT put this off any longer. The surgery has to be done....and it has to be done ASAP.

In the beginning I was going to have only one leg done at a time. However, her legs seems to be getting worse now (I know they are) and every once in a while now she is in pain - I'd say about once a month. I will say, though, that ever since I started her on the Cosequin she has improved DRAMATICALLY!!! Cosequin has literally been a LIFESAVER for us!

Anyhow, Tatum is so "baby" like - I just can't explain her personality but I was just too scared in the beginning to have both legs done at the same time. I just thought that knowing her personality, and the way she is, that it would be too much for her. HOWEVER, now that her little knees are worse, I feel that both really DO need to be done at the same time.

Tatum's breeder recommended that I do only one at a time, however, this was a while back - when her knees weren't this bad and before she was ever in any pain. I have heard different people say different things. Some people only recommend doing one at a time, while others recommend doing both at the same time as it is only ONE surgery that they have to be put through, ONE recovery that they have to go through, one car ride there and one car ride back (this is of huge importance to me as Tatum HATES the car), etc. and actually, I am starting to think this way as well. I would just rather get it over and done with and out of the way and not have to put her through it TWICE. Plus, the longer I wait the worse her other knee is going to get. And I HOPE that arthritis has not already set in, but that could very well be...and I am just thinking that by going ahead and doing both knees at the same time maybe I can LESSEN her chances of the arthritis being worse in the other knee if I go ahead and just get it done now too. I mean I am thinking of the here and now, but I also feel that it is really important to think about long term as well. Does this make any sense?

Anyway, I am almost positive (99% sure) that I am going to go ahead and do both knees at the same time....BUT, I would like to get some of your opinions and thoughts on it first, before I go and schedule the actual surgery tomorrow. And I would especially LOVE to hear from those of you who's babies have actually gone through this surgery before. What your experience was like, how your baby handled it and got along after surgery, etc. And to those of you who's babies had both knees done at the same time, would you do it again? Or was having both knees done at the same time too hard on them? Should they ever need this surgery again (God forbid) would you opt for doing only one knee at a time, the next time around?

Thanks so much in advance!
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Old 03-09-2009, 03:49 AM   #2
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I don't really know anything about this at all but I wanted to bump your thread so hopefully someone will give you some opinions.

If I was to have an opinion though I would do both at the same time so you both only go through the process once because as well as all the things you mentioned it also means that you won't be playing it all through you mind again in the run up to the next surgrey. JMO.

I know you will make the right choice for Tatum because she is your baby and you love her and know her better than anyone else. Go with what your gut feelings are.

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Old 03-09-2009, 04:18 AM   #3
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aww..my poor Tate! And i dont have any advice but I am praying for both you and Tate!! We love her so much and we hope she gets recover from it very soon after her surgery!
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Old 03-09-2009, 04:42 AM   #4
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Brooke, I know how worried and scared you must be! When I found out CoCo had to have hers done, I was devastated. We did both knees at the same time, the vet recommended this, for all the reasons you have stated. One op, one recovery time etc.

I tell you what, if we hadn't had them both done together, I may not have had the second one done! It was not easy for her, but I think it was worse for me, I spent weeks in tears. I was so very pleased we did them at the same time!

Another reason to have them done at once is that when they are recovering from one op, they would be putting more pressure on the other bad leg. At least when you do them together, they have to rest both legs together.

Make sure you get a good supply of pain meds, it's vital they don't feel too much pain while recovering.

Is her hair short at the moment? If not, cut it short. They will shave her completely neked from about the waist down, and I was very silly and didn't get her cut before.. it really looked ugly with half neked and half long, and of course you can't do much once they've had the op, well not for a while anyway.

If you need any more help or tips, please just ask, I will help you in any way I can.
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Old 03-09-2009, 07:33 AM   #5
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I actually think this is something that the surgeon should decide unless they have no preference. Reason being, they have to make sure that the anesthetic episode goes safety and increased time under anesethesia can be a concern.

I like the idea of doing both knees at once for the reasons you gave (mostly one recovery) but I would ask the surgeon to decide... They have seen this so many times and should know what works for them by now.
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Old 03-10-2009, 06:25 AM   #6
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Default Luxating patellas

I'm new here, and have inherited my daughter's Reesie while nursing school takes all her time.

We faced this about two weeks ago and so far we're getting through it. The little peanut has good days and some not so good, but we're doing our best to help her through. She had both knees done at the same time, and this was something that was left to our decision. What you need to think about is the psychological trauma that the poor little thing will go through. We thought that once was enough, do them both and get it over with. She is scared to vibrating now as we go through the checkup visits. There's no way I would have put her through this twice.

As she recovers, we find that keeping her warm is a challenge as she was shaved right down below her rib cage. She shakes either with fear, cold, or maybe occasional pain. We make sure she gets her pain meds, but here we are two weeks after surgery and she's doing pretty good. The vet said on Sunday that she is doing remarkably well for this being such a short time after surgery. We keep her crated when we can't keep a constant eye on her and she doesn't seem to mind. For her it's a safe haven.

There will be days that you'll worry and the tears will flow, but it gets better.

http://i115.photobucket.com/albums/n...surgery002.jpg
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Old 03-10-2009, 09:54 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReesiesDad View Post
I'm new here, and have inherited my daughter's Reesie while nursing school takes all her time.

We faced this about two weeks ago and so far we're getting through it. The little peanut has good days and some not so good, but we're doing our best to help her through. She had both knees done at the same time, and this was something that was left to our decision. What you need to think about is the psychological trauma that the poor little thing will go through. We thought that once was enough, do them both and get it over with. She is scared to vibrating now as we go through the checkup visits. There's no way I would have put her through this twice.

As she recovers, we find that keeping her warm is a challenge as she was shaved right down below her rib cage. She shakes either with fear, cold, or maybe occasional pain. We make sure she gets her pain meds, but here we are two weeks after surgery and she's doing pretty good. The vet said on Sunday that she is doing remarkably well for this being such a short time after surgery. We keep her crated when we can't keep a constant eye on her and she doesn't seem to mind. For her it's a safe haven.

There will be days that you'll worry and the tears will flow, but it gets better.

http://i115.photobucket.com/albums/n...surgery002.jpg
Sounds like you're going through what we went through!

I wish you and your baby well with her recovery.



Something else I thought of.. do you have a stroller? Our two sleep on our bed, but I was worried she would fall off, so I put her to sleep in the stroller for 4 months after her surgery. She was safe, warm and comfortable in there.
She occasionally still asks to be put in the stroller at night. It is too cute!
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Old 03-10-2009, 10:11 AM   #8
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Been there....

Both at the same for all the reasons posted above.

You will NOT want to put her thru it again, trust me, as I had to and it sucks. Small dogs can recover ok from both at the same time It WILL be rough, no doubt about it, BUT so worth it in the end
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Old 03-10-2009, 11:04 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ReesiesDad View Post
I'm new here, and have inherited my daughter's Reesie while nursing school takes all her time.

We faced this about two weeks ago and so far we're getting through it. The little peanut has good days and some not so good, but we're doing our best to help her through. She had both knees done at the same time, and this was something that was left to our decision. What you need to think about is the psychological trauma that the poor little thing will go through. We thought that once was enough, do them both and get it over with. She is scared to vibrating now as we go through the checkup visits. There's no way I would have put her through this twice.

As she recovers, we find that keeping her warm is a challenge as she was shaved right down below her rib cage. She shakes either with fear, cold, or maybe occasional pain. We make sure she gets her pain meds, but here we are two weeks after surgery and she's doing pretty good. The vet said on Sunday that she is doing remarkably well for this being such a short time after surgery. We keep her crated when we can't keep a constant eye on her and she doesn't seem to mind. For her it's a safe haven.

There will be days that you'll worry and the tears will flow, but it gets better.

http://i115.photobucket.com/albums/n...surgery002.jpg
oh what a face- but that picture makes me hope we never have to go through that.

Brooke- I would do it both at the same time as long as the surgeon says that is fine. Getting through it once is all you should have to do- i can't imagine doing it once and then having to bring her back in and go through all that pain again.
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Old 03-10-2009, 01:08 PM   #10
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i would do both at the same time as long as the vet/surgeon gives the okay.. thats one less time you have to put tate under and the recovery time she'd only have to go through it once. one of my girl friends had to get this done on her yorkie and she had to carry her in a sling for a while.. also she did some kind of hydro therapy thing where her dog would swim in the bathtub to help strengthen the legs again? dont know what thats all about though. good luck!!
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Old 03-10-2009, 01:21 PM   #11
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i would do both at the same time as long as the vet/surgeon gives the okay.. thats one less time you have to put tate under and the recovery time she'd only have to go through it once. one of my girl friends had to get this done on her yorkie and she had to carry her in a sling for a while.. also she did some kind of hydro therapy thing where her dog would swim in the bathtub to help strengthen the legs again? dont know what thats all about though. good luck!!
hydro therapy is GREAT!! I use it for Layla's LP in her back legs- it helps strengthen the muscles around her knee cap- i'm doing what we can to prevent the surgery but that would be GREAT therapy for after the surgery- low impact!
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Old 03-12-2009, 04:06 PM   #12
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I'm considering doing both of Bella's at the same time too. I've been putting it off and need to get it done. How much time do you think I would need to take off of work? I'm thinking two weeks. My mom watches them while I work, but I want to be there for the first days.
Did you all go to a specialist or have your vet do the surgery? I'm debating. My vet has done several with good results. There are so many factors.
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Old 03-12-2009, 04:07 PM   #13
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I'm considering doing both of Bella's at the same time too. I've been putting it off and need to get it done. How much time do you think I would need to take off of work? I'm thinking two weeks. My mom watches them while I work, but I want to be there for the first days.
Did you all go to a specialist or have your vet do the surgery? I'm debating. My vet has done several with good results. There are so many factors.
I think they need to be off their feet for 10 week? i could be wrong- i remmeber it being an absurd amount of time to try and keep a hyper yorkie calm i'm sure if you take the first 2 weeks that will be long enough for the intense pain to subside but she will be in casts longer than that- you are lucky that she had a grandma to watch her during the day
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Old 03-12-2009, 04:24 PM   #14
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I think they need to be off their feet for 10 week? i could be wrong- i remmeber it being an absurd amount of time to try and keep a hyper yorkie calm i'm sure if you take the first 2 weeks that will be long enough for the intense pain to subside but she will be in casts longer than that- you are lucky that she had a grandma to watch her during the day
Hey Brooke, i've already told you my opinion about her LP surgery i believe. Both at the same time. Makes it easier. Believe me. lol the little guys take to it much better and the recovery is quicker.

I just wanted to comment about what Marcerella said. They should not be "off their feet" for recovery. Walking is a huge part of rehab and she should be walking the very first day she comes home. Yes you do have to keep her calm tho. no running, jumping, playing, beds, furniture, stairs, etc. as for the casts, i hate when vets use them. it is very old school and research as shown that it is better NOT to restrict the joints from moving. Patients after knee surgery should start their rehab the very next day by using their legs and walking 3 times a day for 10 minutes each time. also there are range of motion exercises that should be starts a few days after surgery to flex and extend all the joints in the leg to keep them moving and build up muscle. her back legs are pretty atrophied i'm sure from her not using them properly. Ask YorkieMalt about her guys recoverys.
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Old 03-12-2009, 04:29 PM   #15
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Shelby had both done at the same time....... and I wouldn't have had it any other way. It was a BIG surgery for her to take on, but I think it was easier on her. Only 1 recovery, and also 1 time under anesthesia. OF course with 2 legs bandaged, she relied on me for ALOT. We carried her to and from her pee pad, to her food bowl, too see out the window, etc.... you get the idea. I also made susre that she only laid in the same place for a limited amount of time so she wouldn't get tired, depressed or bored. We always went on our "walk" thru the house looking out windows and checking out different rooms. She liked being carried around for these adventures. ANd Yes, they are able to walk and need to get some exercise, but they also have went thru a major surgery... and just like people, they NEED to rest and have recovery time. Shelby was a tired and sore little gal for awhile. (but it is true.... kinda like how they get you outta bed in the hospital after surgery to walk around, you need to have some "mobile" time..... but it can be overdone)

Our surgeon was great, as were the gals that prepped her for surgery. She was not shaved drastically...... matter of fact, they preserved her coat very well. I was glad about that..... plus it was cold last year in Febuary!

We used saranwrap on her bandages at "pee pee" time to keep them from getting wet. It worked wonderfully!!!! Keep that in mind.
I am sure you have done your homework on this surgery.... don't be afraid to ask the surgeon questions!!

Here is a pic of Shelby after surgery...

001.jpg
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