Star and his surgery

This Thursday, I take Star to the orthopedic vet specialist for arthroscopic surgery. X-rays don’t tell the whole story. We won’t know the extent of damage until they get a scope in and look around. If it’s fragmented coronoid process (the “rock in the shoe”), then they’ll clean up what they can. We’re looking at 2-1/2 to 3 months of very limited activity.

If it’s worse – medial compartment disease (bone on bone, with cartilage worn away), then they’ll perform the SHO. SHO is Sliding Humeral Osteotomy, which involves cutting the humerus, inserting a large metal plate, and shifting the load “from the diseased medial compartment to the healthy lateral compartment.” You can see more at

It’ll take up to 4 months for him to recover from an SHO – four months of extremely limited walking on leash only. No obedience class, no playing with Lacey, no unsupervised trips to the backyard to pee and poop. And that’s just on one elbow. If both elbows need the surgery, then we take him back and do it all over again with the other elbow. Just to be sure, the vet’s going to scope his left shoulder while Star’s out – to rule out damage if none is there, or to assess damage and determine treatment.

Sure, it’s not the best time to undergo surgery. We’re going camping with the dogs several times during recovery. We’re taking a vacation to Seattle over the 4th of July. But we’d rather do it now than wait til winter and risk more damage.

I’ll keep you posted.


1 comment so far

  1. Natalie on

    Hugs and love to you all. I will be hoping and praying that it is the least severe problem!!!

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