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  • Author or Editor: Tommaso Nicetto x
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A 5-year-old 4.0-kg (8.8-lb) castrated male domestic shorthair cat was referred because of grade 4/5 left hind limb lameness and swelling in the region of the second metatarsal bone of that limb.


Computed tomography revealed an expansile osteolytic lesion of the second metatarsal bone associated with a periosteal reaction on the third metatarsal bone. There was no evidence of metastases.


Amputation of the second and third metatarsal bones was performed but resulted in medial instability of the remaining metatarsal bones. The instability was treated by placing a loop of 2-0 monofilament, nonabsorbable suture from a screw placed in the distal row of the tarsal bones to a tunnel in the proximal metaphysis of the fourth metatarsal bone. Clinical reevaluation of the cat 7, 15, 30, 60, 90, and 210 days after surgery and radiographic reevaluation 90 and 210 days after surgery showed complete recovery of the cat. The implants were removed at the time of the 7-month reevaluation. Clinical evaluation 18 months after implant removal showed the treated joint to be stable.


The surgical stabilization technique described here provided medial stability of the tarsometatarsal joint after amputation of the second and third meta-tarsal bones. This method may be an alternative to arthrodesis while maintaining articular function in cats. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2021;259:294–299)

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association



To describe the use of a customized 3–D-printed titanium prosthesis as adjunctive treatment for foramen magnum decompression (FMD) in dogs with Chiari-like malformation (CM) and syringomyelia (SM).


8 dogs with clinical signs and MRI findings of CM-SM.


3-D reconstruction of CT images of the head was used to simulate an occipital craniectomy and design the prosthesis. FMD was performed, and the prosthesis was implanted. Follow-up was performed 1, 6, and 12 months later, and clinical status was scored. Repeated MRI images were compared to identify changes involving the neural structures, particularly the syrinx.


All prostheses were easily positioned based on the preoperative 3-D models, with no complications. At 12 months after surgery, 3 dogs were free of previous medications, 4 were still receiving steroid medications but at lower doses, and 1 was occasionally receiving acupuncture. MRI of 5 dogs 6 to 20 months after surgery revealed resolution of SM (n = 1), reduced size of SM (3), or worse SM (1). All dogs showed an increase in size of the caudal cranial fossa. Dogs with a longer presurgical duration of the clinical signs and wider syrinx generally had worse outcomes than other dogs.


Findings suggested that use of customized 3–D-printed titanium prosthesis and associated FMD can represent an adjunctive option to medically treated dogs with CM-SM. Although the small number of cases precludes definitive conclusions, early surgical treatment, particularly in dogs with a small syrinx, could ensure better long-term outcomes, as previously suggested.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research