Long term follow-up of avascular necrosis of the femoral head in the dog

Authors

  • C. J. Piek,

    1. Department of Clinical Sciences of Companion Animals, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, PO Box 80154, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands
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  • H. A. W. Hazewinkel,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Clinical Sciences of Companion Animals, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, PO Box 80154, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands
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  • W. T. C. Wolvekamp,

    1. *Department of Radiology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, PO Box 80164, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands
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  • R. C. Nap,

    1. Department of Clinical Sciences of Companion Animals, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, PO Box 80154, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands
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  • B. P. Mey

    1. Department of Clinical Sciences of Companion Animals, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, PO Box 80154, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands
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Reprint requests to H. A. W. Hazewinkel

ABSTRACT

In a clinical study of 35 dogs with avascular necrosis of the femoral head, 60 per cent were Yorkshire terriers; the mean age of 33 of the dogs at onset of clinical signs was seven months. The dogs had the following signs: muscle atrophy (n = 25), shortening of the affected leg (n = 14), pain on passive movement of the hip joint (n = 28), and crepitation of the hip joint (n = 8). Radiographic findings were irregular density and flattening of the femoral head in combination with degenerative joint disease. Conservative treatment consisted of exercise therapy, and surgical treatment of a standard femoral head and neck excision. In 17 of the dogs the results of therapy were evaluated with the help of a questionnaire. It is concluded that femoral head and neck excision is indicated when conservative treatment fails to lead to clinical improvement within four weeks. Femoral head and neck excision has a good long term prognosis; however, slight intermittent lameness may remain.

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