Patient: Axel is an 8-year-old, 72-pound greyhound
Diagnosis: Left tarsal joint dislocation with associated serial cast abrasions
Type Of Device: Jointed hock brace
Case Report: In January of 2022, Axel dislocated his left tarsal joint. The orthopedic surgeon managed the injury through serial castings/splints for several months. Axel did not tolerate his castings well. He chewed through one and experienced abrasions and rubbing. Several of his toes were abraded to the bone. He was put in another full leg cast for several weeks, but the sores on his toes did not heal. His veterinarian reached out to us to determine if Axel’s condition could be helped with a brace.
We evaluated and fit Axel for a jointed hock brace in March of 2022. The brace supports the tarsus while keeping his toes open to the air to facilitate healing. The joints of the brace allow range of motion at the hock which can be increased as his condition improves. To begin, we restricted all motion at the hock and may allow increased motion later. In concurrence with their veterinarian, we recommended Axel wear the brace 24/7 to protect his toes while supporting his tarsus dislocation.
Axel visited us in June for a re-check appointment. The open wounds on his toes had completely healed. His family said Axel adapted to wearing the brace very quickly. They’re happy Axel no longer requires serial casting and he can continue to play with his squeaky toys. Axel will wear the brace for the rest of his life and we will provide him with all the follow-up care he needs.