Post op care – patella luxation surgery

The Procedure

Up to five procedures may have been performed to allow the patella (knee cap) to run freely in its normal position and prevent it from luxating (dislocating). This may have involved using metal pins and wires to hold bone fragments together while they heal.

The Medication

  • Loxicom – is an anti-inflammatory pain killer. It is usually prescribed for 4 weeks following the surgery. Stop if vomiting or diarrhea is experienced and call for advice.
  • Noroclav or Cephacare – are antibiotics usually prescribed for 7 days following the procedure.
  • Other pain relief may be prescribed as necessary

Post op

  • Eating, drinking and urination should have been seen by the morning after surgery
  • Defaecation may be delayed for several days post-op
  • Cold compresses can be used on the wound for the first 72 hours. Ten minutes on and ten minutes off, if tolerated, throughout the day.
  • A course of laser therapy may be prescribed to reduce pain/swelling and improve healing

Exercise

  • Strict restriction and supervision of activity is required
  • Preventing running and jumping is essential until told otherwise (consider using stair gates and ramps)
  • Consider using a crate/cage to control activity when unsupervised
  • 1 – 10 days – 5 minutes lead exercise 3 times daily
  • 10 – 20 days – 10 minutes lead exercise 3 times daily
  • 20 + days – 15 minutes lead exercise 3 times daily
  • Failure to follow these points may result in serious consequences including further surgery

Physiotherapy/hydrotherapy

  • Early gentle walking on the lead is helpful
  • Flexing and extending the leg through its normal range of motion several times a day is also of benefit
  • An appointment with a qualified physiotherapist may be recommended
  • Hydrotherapy is extremely beneficial from 4 weeks post op to improve flexibility and build muscle
  • Follow – up appointments:
    • 2-3 days to check the wound
    • 14 days to remove sutures
    • 6 – 8 weeks to assess the outcome of the surgery

What The Future Holds…

  • The future is usually bright. If the patella is stable after 6 weeks then usually it will stay that way.
  • Degenerative joint disease (arthritis) may develop later in life and require management
  • Further surgery is occasionally required if the patella remains unstable