Surgical repair of patellar luxation in llamas: 7 cases (1980-1996)

Linda Van Hoogmoed From the Department of Surgical and Radiological Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

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Jack R. Snyder From the Department of Surgical and Radiological Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

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Philip Vasseur From the Department of Surgical and Radiological Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616.

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Objective

To evaluate anatomy of the stifle in llamas and determine outcome of llamas that underwent surgery for repair of patellar luxation.

Design

Anatomic and retrospective study.

Animals

6 llamas with unilateral patellar luxation and 1 llama with bilateral luxations.

Procedure

6 stifles from llama cadavers were dissected to determine anatomy. Medical records were reviewed to identify history, procedure, outcome, and complications of llamas that underwent surgery.

Results

6 llamas had lateral patellar luxation (including the llama with bilateral luxations), and 1 had medial patellar luxation. Six llamas had a history of trauma before onset of clinical signs. Two llamas underwent tibial tuberosity transposition, but luxation recurred in both and 1 had problems with breakage of implants. The other 5 llamas underwent imbrication and release procedures; however, luxation recurred in 4 of the 5. Surgery was repeated in 2 llamas, with successful outcomes.

Clinical Implications

Results suggest that imbrication and release procedures may be useful for correction of patellar luxation in llamas without other bony abnormalities. However, long (20 cm) imbrication and release incisions are needed for a successful outcome. Use of a sling after surgery, to allow a gradual return to weight bearing and exercise, may also be important. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998; 212:860-865)

Objective

To evaluate anatomy of the stifle in llamas and determine outcome of llamas that underwent surgery for repair of patellar luxation.

Design

Anatomic and retrospective study.

Animals

6 llamas with unilateral patellar luxation and 1 llama with bilateral luxations.

Procedure

6 stifles from llama cadavers were dissected to determine anatomy. Medical records were reviewed to identify history, procedure, outcome, and complications of llamas that underwent surgery.

Results

6 llamas had lateral patellar luxation (including the llama with bilateral luxations), and 1 had medial patellar luxation. Six llamas had a history of trauma before onset of clinical signs. Two llamas underwent tibial tuberosity transposition, but luxation recurred in both and 1 had problems with breakage of implants. The other 5 llamas underwent imbrication and release procedures; however, luxation recurred in 4 of the 5. Surgery was repeated in 2 llamas, with successful outcomes.

Clinical Implications

Results suggest that imbrication and release procedures may be useful for correction of patellar luxation in llamas without other bony abnormalities. However, long (20 cm) imbrication and release incisions are needed for a successful outcome. Use of a sling after surgery, to allow a gradual return to weight bearing and exercise, may also be important. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998; 212:860-865)

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