Systematic review of surgical treatments for cranial cruciate ligament disease in dogs

J Am Anim Hosp Assoc. 2014 Sep-Oct;50(5):315-21. doi: 10.5326/JAAHA-MS-6356.


Surgery for cranial cruciate ligament disease is often recommended; however, it is unclear if one procedure is superior. The aim of this systematic review was to answer the a priori question, "Is there a surgical procedure that will allow a consistent return to normal clinical function in dogs with cranial cruciate ligament disease and is that procedure superior to others?" A systematic literature search was performed through September 2013. Peer reviewed publication in the English language and 6 mo of postoperative follow-up were required. In total, 444 manuscripts were identified and reviewed, and 34 met the inclusion criteria. Two studies provided level 1, 6 provided level 2, 6 provided level 3, and 20 provided level 4 evidence relative to the study question. The most common surgical procedures included tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO, n = 14), lateral extracapsular suture (n = 13), tibial tuberosity advancement (n = 6). The strength of the evaluated evidence most strongly supports the ability of the TPLO in the ability to return dogs to normal function. It also provided strong support that functional recovery in the intermediate postoperative time period was superior following TPLO compared with lateral extracapsular suture. There was insufficient data to adequately evaluate other surgical procedures.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anterior Cruciate Ligament / surgery*
  • Anterior Cruciate Ligament Injuries
  • Dog Diseases / surgery*
  • Dogs
  • Joint Diseases / surgery
  • Joint Diseases / veterinary*
  • Osteotomy / veterinary*
  • Postoperative Complications / veterinary
  • Recovery of Function
  • Tibia / surgery*
  • Treatment Outcome