Use of a single-ring transarticular fixator construct for immobilisation of the talocrural joint following common calcaneal tenorrhaphy.

Norton J, Decamp C, Yu J, Rooks R.
Jeffrey Norton, DVM, Southpaws Veterinary Referral and Emergency Center, 8500 Arlington Blvd, Fairfax, VA 22031, USA, Phone: +1 703 752 9100 , Fax: +1 703-752-9215, E-mail: [email protected]

Objective: To describe the use of a single-ring transarticular fixator construct for use in immobilisation of the talocrural joint in order to protect the healing of surgical repair of ruptures of the common calcaneal tendon. Methods: Ten repairs were performed in nine dogs. The age, breed, sex, details about the duration of pre-existing lameness, and the location and severity of tendon rupture at presentation were recorded for each dog. Recheck examinations were performed at one, two, four, six, eight, and 12 weeks postoperatively. At each visit up to and including six weeks, radiographs of the affected limb were taken. Fixators were removed after a mean of 5.9 weeks. Complications were documented and classified as major or minor. Major complications were those that required an additional surgical intervention. Results: All repairs progressed to a satisfactory outcome. While eight of the 10 repairs developed some type of complication, only two required surgical intervention. In one repair, seroma formation necessitated drain placement and the other developed severe periarticular tarsal swelling necessitating early removal of the fixator. Lameness scores overall increased during the initial six weeks, however lameness quickly resolved following fixator removal. At 12 weeks postoperatively, all tendons had healed. The lameness had fully resolved in eight of 10 repairs and had drastically decreased in the remaining two. Clinical significance: A single-ring transarticular fixator construct is a reliable means of immobilising the talocrural joint following surgical repair of the common calcaneal tendon. Periarticular tissue swelling is common but typically mild.ary tumours is clinically applicable in carefully selected cases.