At VOSM, we commonly use orthopedic devices as a supplement to or replacement for surgical procedures. Different conditions benefit from orthopedic devices, including CCL tears, hip luxations, shoulder injuries and foot and ankle injuries. These devices may include orthotics, prosthetics, braces, slings and vests.
Orthopedic Devices By Condition
CCL Tear - Hinged Stifle Brace
A hinged stifle brace may be used to stabilize atorn CCL when surgery is not an option due to medical or age limitations or financial constraints. For dogs with CCL tears in both legs, a hinged stifle brace may be recommended for one of the knees while the other undergoes and recovers from surgery. Once healed, the second knee may be treated surgically.
In human medicine, there are multiple categories of knee braces. In dogs, however, only function braces are recommended to stabilize otherwise unstable knees.
Other indications for stifle braces may include post-operative recovery for medial or lateral collateral ligament instabilities (MCL or LCL tears) and patellar tendon ruptures.
At VOSM, we use gait analysis software to determine patients' weight distribution across all four limbs both at the initial consultation and subsequent rechecks. This data can be used to objectively assess progress and modify treatment as necessary.
Limb Salvage - Prosthetics
For dogs with cancer, tumors or severe trauma, amputation may be necessary. Giant breed dogs or those with concurrent orthopedic conditions, however, may need additional limb support. Many of VOSM's patients continually benefit from forelimb or hind limb prosthetics.
For more information about limb salvage procedures and treating cancer and tumors, click here.
Shoulder conditions commonly cause forelimb lameness. Our patients have benefited from both surgical and non-surgical treatments. Based on the condition, patients may benefit from shoulder support systems, vests or velpeau slings to protect shoulders as they heal.
Shoulder Support System - Hobbles
Shoulder support systems (hobbles) are removable, breathable neoprene/polyester sleeves that attach over the patients' shoulders and Velcro securely at each forelimb.
Hobbles can be applies following arthroscopic treatment, the most common shoulder treatment at VOSM, while the patient is still under anesthesia. Patients can immediately bear weight and often adapt rapidly to the device, which is intended to limit abduction, flexion and extension of the shoulder.
Hobbles can be worn continuously for several months with minimal irritation and can easily be removed for rehabilitation therapy appointments.
Recommended Products: DogLeggs
Shoulder Stabilization Vest - Shoulder Luxation (Dislocation)
Shoulder Velpeau Sling
The velpeau sling be integrated into the treatment plan for severe medial shoulder instability/syndrome (MSI) patients. It may also be used for shoulder dislocations and fractures repairs. The sling is intended to completely prevent weight bearing on the forelimb and encourage weight bearing in the contralateral forelimb during a customized rehabilitation therapy plan.
Carpal & Tarsal (Foot & Ankle) Devices
Numerous clinical conditions, including carpal hyperextensions, sprains and strains, as well as Achilles tendon disruptions, may benefit from carpal or tarsal devices.
Orthotic devices are considered conservative treatment options for carpal and tarsal conditions. Post-surgical patients may also benefit from orthotics. These devices include support wraps with or without thermoplastics, custom braces and hinged braces.
Hip Luxation (Dislocation) or Fracture - Ehmer Sling
An Ehmer sling is intended to protect the hip following conservative or surgical treatment of hip joint dislocations or fractures. Unfortunately, the sling cannot easily be removed and reapplied for rehabilitation therapy appointments. The custom, form-fitting sling allows for proper positioning and immobilization of the joint.
Recommended Products: DogLeggs Vest With Ehmer Sling