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What is the CCL in a dog?

Today I would like to go over what a CCL in a dog is, as well as it’s function.  First off, a CCL in a dog is the same as saying ACL in a person.  Dog’s have a CCL, not an ACL. 

The CCL is a connective tissue in the knee that stabilizes the lower leg to the upper leg.  It connects the tibia to the femur.  Without this ligament, there can be partial or complete joint instability, pain, and lameness present.

The CCL holds the tibia in place, andprevents internal rotation and hyperextension (which is over stretching the leg).  The meniscus (located between the femur and tibia) absorb impact and provide a gliding surface between the femur and tibial plateau/tuberosity.  Sometimes the medial meniscus can become torn when the knee is unstable from a CCL tear.

Symptoms of a rupture include crepitus (crackling or popping sound), decreased range of motion, hind leg extended when sitting (when the injured leg is off to one side), pain to the touch, not wanting to move as much, sore after a walk, swelling, and turning the leg out to the side when standing. 

Leaving a ruptured ligament alone, without the aid of bracing, can leave misaligned joint causing further damage, inflammation, and pain.  This can lead to early joint disease and further meniscus tears.

Bracing helps to hold the tibia in place, while acting as a buffer or shock absorber, preventing further movement and issues from occurring.


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