Davies Veterinary Specialists has announced that it is now offering Canine Unicompartmental Elbow replacement (CUE), a new surgical procedure for dogs with canine elbow dysplasia.

Davies says the new treatment is appropriate for dogs with severe diffuse elbow dysplasia, where cartilage wear results in bone rubbing against bone, called medial compartment disease (MCD). In these cases, Davies says that the prognosis is typically poor but now CUE is providing a promising alternative surgical option when arthroscopic and non-surgical options have failed.

The surgery involves partial resurfacing of the elbow joint. By focusing on the specific area of disease in the medial compartment, the CUE implant provides a less invasive bone-sparing option for resurfacing the bone-on-bone medial compartment while preserving the dog’s own good cartilage in the lateral compartment. Davies says that in most dogs, the technique significantly improves the pain and lameness that was caused by bone-on-bone grinding.

Unlike total elbow replacements, CUE does not require major bone cutting. On average, recovery tends to be significantly faster with progressive improvement peaking six months after surgery.

Mike Farrell, EBVS European and RCVS Specialist in Small Animal Surgery (Orthopaedics) at Davies recently performed a successful CUE procedure on Rubee, an 11-year-old Labradoodle diagnosed with severe MCD. At the recheck, six weeks after surgery Mike said: "Rubee’s early response to CUE has been nothing short of astonishing. I would have been pleased if she had made the improvement seen today after six months rather than six weeks."

Louise Clark Head of Anaesthesia and the Pain Clinic at Davies Veterinary Specialists continued: "CUE potentially provides a surgical alternative for what is currently an incredibly frustrating condition to manage and one that causes animals a lot of pain, and owners a great deal of angst.

"Arguably it is an ethically robust procedure because it can dramatically reduce patient pain with a relatively well defined risk of complications in a patient cohort that is otherwise at risk of euthanasia because of elbow disease."

For more information, visit: https://vetspecialists.co.uk/services/orthopaedics/


Whilst you're here, take a moment to see our latest job opportunities for vet nurses.