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Dogs
Use of acoustoelastography to evaluate tendon healing after surgical repair of an Achilles mechanism laceration and rehabilitation with a custom tarsal orthotic splint in a dog
  1. E. C. Hans1,
  2. S. J. Sample1,
  3. S. E. Duenwald-Kuehl2,
  4. R. Vanderby Jr2 and
  5. P. Muir1
  1. 1Comparative Orthopaedic Research Laboratory, University of Wisconsin-Madison, School of Veterinary Medicine, 2015 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53706, USA
  2. 2Department of Orthopedics & Rehabilitation, Wisconsin Institute of Medicine Research, School of Medicine & Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1111 Highland Avenue, Madison, WI 53705, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr P. Muir, muirp{at}vetmed.wisc.edu

Abstract

Achilles mechanism laceration in dogs is commonly treated by suture repair and temporary tarsal immobilisation. Acoustoelastography is an ultrasound technique that can relate changes in ultrasonic wave amplitude to a tendon's mechanical properties. This report describes use of this novel technique for monitoring mechanical healing of an Achilles tendon laceration in a dog after suture repair. A three-year-old spayed female Duck Tolling Retriever was diagnosed with complete laceration of the Achilles mechanism after traumatic injury. Suture repair was performed with temporary tarsal immobilisation by use of a custom hinged orthotic splint. Acoustoelastography examination was performed immediately after surgery, 6, 16, 22 and 29 weeks after surgery. Tarsal range of motion was gradually increased after surgery by staged modification of the splint. Serial acoustoelastography examinations demonstrated improving mechanical properties throughout the recovery period. At 29 weeks, mechanical properties of the repaired tendon approximated that of the normal contralateral Achilles mechanism.

  • Dogs
  • Tendon pathophysiology
  • Ultrasonography
  • Received January 11, 2014.
  • Revision received June 23, 2014.
  • Accepted June 29, 2014.

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  • Received January 11, 2014.
  • Revision received June 23, 2014.
  • Accepted June 29, 2014.
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