Achilles Tendon Replacement & Stabilisation in Waterfowl (Disease Investigation & Control - Treatment and Care)

Summary Information
Type of technique Health & Management / Disease Investigation & Control / Treatment & Care / Techniques:
Synonyms and Keywords
  • Perosis repair
  • Slipped tendon repair
Description Open reduction and stabilisation of the tendon, sometimes in conjunction with deepening of trochlear groove. The following description outlines the procedure as described by Bennett (B12.42.w5), Olsen (B13.46.w1) and Coles (B14).
  • Anaesthetise.
  • Surgically prepare leg.
  • Incise over caudolateral aspect of the joint, midway between the lateral condyle of the tibiotarsus and the medially displaced tendon.
  • Dissect tendon free of adhesions, return to correct position within trochlear groove.
  • Deepen tendon groove on the distal tibiotarsus if required (B12.42.w5).
  • Suture tendon sheath to lateral periosteum and retinaculum (simple interrupted sutures, 3-0 (2 metric) absorbable suture) (B13.46.w1). OR suture to the lateral epicondyle of the trochlea, using a suture of polydioxanone, passed through half the thickness of the tendon and through a tunnel in the lateral epicondyle produced using a hypodermic needle, which then acts as a guide for passing the suture through the tunnel (B14).
  • Close skin incision (simple interrupted sutures, 4-0 non-absorbable suture).
  • Bandage leg and splint for approximately one week with e.g. tongue depressor.

(B12.42.w5, B13.46.w1, B14).

Appropriate Use (?)
  • Treatment of some types of Perosis.
  • Dietary correction prior to surgery is important (B14).
  • Normal use of the leg should be seen by the second week after surgery (B13.46.w1).
Complications/ Limitations / Risk
  • Outcome is most likely to be positive if the correction is carried out early (B12.42.w5).
Equipment / Chemicals required and Suppliers Equipment and consumables for general anaesthesia and surgery, including surgical instruments and consumables suitable for the size of the bird.
Expertise level / Ease of Use
  • Veterinary procedure: should only be undertaken by a veterinarian.
Cost/ Availability May be quite expensive: cost of general anaesthesia and substantial surgical operation.
Legal and Ethical Considerations In some countries there may be legislation restricting the use of this type of technique to licensed veterinarians. For example in the UK: "The Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966 (Section 19) provides, subject to a number of exceptions, that only registered members of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons may practice veterinary surgery."(see: LCofC1 - RCVS Guide to Professional Conduct 2000 - Treatment of Animals by Non-Veterinary Surgeons).).
Author Debra Bourne
References B12.42.w5, B13.46.w1, B14

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