Article Text

Companion Animal Practice
Articular and periarticular fractures in the dog and cat
  1. Carlos Macias

    Carlos Macias graduated from the University of Cordoba (Spain) in 1993. He spent five years in general practice in the UK, during which time he obtained the RCVS certificate in small animal surgery. He then completed a three-year residency in orthopaedics at Willows Referral Service in Solihull, gaining the RCVS diploma in small animal surgery (orthopaedics). His interests include arthroscopy, treatment of angular limb deformities, and use of linear hinged external skeletal fixators.

  2. Malcolm McKee

    graduated from Glasgow in 1983. He is a partner in Willows Referral Service, and an RCVS Specialist in Small Animal Surgery (Orthopaedics). His particular interests are complex fracture management, total hip replacement and spinal surgery in the dog.


ARTICULAR and periarticular fractures are common in the dog and cat and, from the point of view of treatment, are often very unforgiving injuries. Failure to deal with these fractures appropriately may result in the development of significant degenerative joint disease (osteoarthritis) and periarticular fibrosis and adhesions, which, in turn, may lead to permanent loss of joint and limb function. Open reduction and internal fixation is generally indicated, and postoperative care is an extremely important aspect of management. This article reviews the various types of articular and periarticular fractures, and discusses the management and prognosis of the most common of these injuries in dogs and cats (with the exception of distal limb fractures and fractures involving shear injuries). Postoperative care techniques and potential complications are also described.

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