Once the conventional treatment for CCL tears, Traditional Repair is an Extracapsular technique which uses a strong leader line suture material to provide joint stability. The suture used in a Traditional Repair is not meant to stay in place and provide support for your dog’s entire life. Instead, its purpose is to prevent any unwanted movement of the joint through the duration of recovery (usually at least 12 weeks of serious restriction), giving your dog time to develop scar tissue and supportive tissue within the knee.
Read More: Traditional Surgery for Ligament Tears
A type of heavy suture material is used to hold the bones in place. The Traditional Repair is an Extracapsular technique – meaning that the suture is placed on the outside of the bones of your dog’s knee joint. This heavy suture prevents the knee from moving improperly, allowing scar tissue to build up around the joint – which later provides stability (the suture lines often break at some point in a dog’s life).
Read More: How Extracapsular Repairs Are Performed
You can expect a recovery time of at least 8-12 weeks, if not longer. It is not unusual for a dog to avoid using their leg for at least a few days up to a week or two following a Traditional Repair surgery.
Most dogs will see a return to full functioning in the limb within 3-4 months following surgery. Physical therapy following surgery can help to make your dog more comfortable and assist them in returning to full function more quickly.
Read More: Traditional Repair Recovery
Standard cost for Extracapsular Repairs typically begin at $700 and range up to about $2200.
The cost for Traditional Repair Surgery is less than TPLO or TTA. Why? It takes much more time and skill to perform a surgery in which you are cutting and changing bone angles.
The cost of any CCL surgery is usually dependent on a few factors:
Size of Your Dog – The smaller the dog, the less supplies and materials necessary (anesthesia, post operative meds, etc.)
Geographic Location – Clinics and hospitals closer to city centers generally are more expensive than rural clinics.
Type of Veterinary Facility – Teaching hospitals and smaller, more rural clinics are less than specialty hospitals in major cities.
What is Included – Is the cost only for the surgery, or are post operative visits, medications and rehabilitation sessions included?
The catalyst for beginning this website, Dog Knee Injury, was my experience with Tucker’s CCL injury. Our first option was to proceed with Conservative Management, and when that failed, we opted to go with a Traditional Repair surgery. I’ve written extensively about Tucker’s Traditional Repair, and encourage you to read both his story and those shared by readers of Dog Knee Injury before making a decision on what route is best for you and your pet.
Here’s where Tucker’s story begins – Tucker’s Traditional Repair