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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So 3 months ago, Monty presented with front paw limping on his right front leg, and I brought him for x rays and sent those in for OFA prelims & ANKC Australian scoring, thread here:
OFA prelim results vs australia scoring

although his limping was on his front, both elbows were scored as normal under OFA & ANKC.. it was his hips that were sketchy as OFA failed them, and Australia passed them..

However he started limping again on the same right front leg once more. started on Monday after a heavy play session and we heard a thud but didn't see what happened (he was wrestling with my brother's golden). I have him booked for a vet visit later today, as restricted activity, ice/cold packs and some supplements on my side didn't help and he is still limping (and my general rule is 3 days vet).

I've been advised that x rays are not a good diagnostics for Elbow dysplasia and heres where I'd like some advise on the CT scans!

When should I pursue a CT scan? is 2 episodes of limping 3 months apart on the same leg a case for this expensive investigation? is there possibility its tendonitis? or a muscle strain that hasn't recovered? He will be getting x rayed again when he turns 2 in October for scoring, and I was thinking of waiting until then at the very least (and hoping we have no more limping episodes then maybe skip it as its so expensive). Of course i will bring this up to the vet later as well.

CT scanning is so expensive.. I reached out to around 5 of 6 vets that have CT scan capabilities in Singapore (we don't have that many... i think i reached out to all of them) and received only 1 quotation back so far ( 2.1-2.5k!). ( specialists of where referrals are needed of course)

The vet I'm visiting later as well has can do CT scans as well.

X rays for your reference taken 3 months ago during the first limping episode.
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I tend to over worry and jump to the worst case all the time ):
 

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I think a CT is the definite on a “maybe” dog. I do think that if it were ED you’d see a lot more limping.
How dramatic is the limping? Is he weight bearing at all? Is it after activity or after rest? Does crate rest help?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I think a CT is the definite on a “maybe” dog. I do think that if it were ED you’d see a lot more limping.
How dramatic is the limping? Is he weight bearing at all? Is it after activity or after rest? Does crate rest help?
he is weight bearing, and it is a very slight limp. he presents with the head bobbing motion when he walks slowly like pacing/ambling around, but if he walks faster (like when i let him out for a pee break) its quite unnoticeable. ):

Do you think its alright to wait until he is 2 for the CT scan and be conservative and treat with pain meds now till then?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Ok back from the vet:

the quotation they provided for both elbows would be $900 + additional $200 for specialist review. Very reasonable!

At the moment he doesn’t recommend/believe there’s a need, and would prefer to try conservative treatment via supplementation and carprofen ( he gave us 2 courses 1 to use now and another in case of another limping episode)
he also asked me for my end goal for the CT scan was if it was just to ‘know’ and get a definitive diagnosis as most of the time surgical options aren’t possible and it’s more of long term management which is what we are doing now.

I asked if it could possibly be muscle strain or tendinitis and he said as both elbows feel exactly the same, no swelling etc he thinks it’s most likely the bone! I’m super sad as he is such an active dog and I hate the possibility that I’d have to ‘restrict’ him for life.

I reckon I will still get the CT done at age 2 later in the year as I’m getting his x rays done for scoring then anyways.

would love to hear more thoughts from everyone.
 

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I lost Charlie in February to multiple myeloma. It was in his bone marrow. He had severe limping several years ago and xrays revealed mild hip dysplasia. We didn’t know at the time. The xrays didn’t match the symptoms. We did FHO surgery based on information at the time. Four years and a bone marrow biopsy later plus advanced tick panels we discovered cancer, babesia which is a tick born disease that causes the immune system to turn on itself. My vets hadn’t caught it because it’s not common where I live, but is where he came from. I guess my point is to work with a vet you trust. Sometimes there can be more than one thing going on. I second guess if he would still be here if we had caught the tick borne disease earlier.


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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Did they check for Panosteitits? Annef
He looked at the x rays and said they appear normal and fine? Do you see anything in the x rays above? He is also almost fully grown currently 19 months already to be exactly ( the x rays were taken when he was 16 months). I didn't think of pano tbh as i thought that presents in younger pups!
 

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Could it be a problem with a paw? How old is he? I did CT scans of Moes front feet and elbows at 7 months. The CT scan done at Univ of Pennsylvania Vet School led them to believe maybe ED and genetic sesamoid bone disease (small plates in top of toes). I spent $4000 and then paid for 3D renderings of his feet. Their surgical recommendation was exploratory and it may not have worked. Thankfully I sought a second opinion from a Veterinary Orthopedic Sports Medicine, VOSM, and they looked at the CT scan and didn’t believe he had ED. They felt he needed to continue developing. They did see the issue in his feet. We did a strict rehab program and conservative management for 6 months. At age 2 he passed OFA’s for hips and elbows. He just passed his first Senior Hunt test and is fine.

Moe limped for 3-4 months on both front feet. It was awful to watch. My advice would be to see an orthopedic specialist that works with sporting dogs if it doesn’t get better on its own.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I lost Charlie in February to multiple myeloma. It was in his bone marrow. He had severe limping several years ago and xrays revealed mild hip dysplasia. We didn’t know at the time. The xrays didn’t match the symptoms. We did FHO surgery based on information at the time. Four years and a bone marrow biopsy later plus advanced tick panels we discovered cancer, babesia which is a tick born disease that causes the immune system to turn on itself. My vets hadn’t caught it because it’s not common where I live, but is where he came from. I guess my point is to work with a vet you trust. Sometimes there can be more than one thing going on. I second guess if he would still be here if we had caught the tick borne disease earlier.


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That is devastating. I will indeed investigate further especially if his signs point to it...
I brought him in for a blood donation awhile back and they ran a tick panel on him. he tested positive for ehrlichia antibodies which mean he did may have had it before OR is currently infected with it. ( it can present as asymptomatic). To be safe we ran a complete panel for all tick borne diseases, and he came back negative for all (including Babesia).
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Could it be a problem with a paw? How old is he? I did CT scans of Moes front feet and elbows at 7 months. The CT scan done at Univ of Pennsylvania Vet School led them to believe maybe ED and genetic sesamoid bone disease (small plates in top of toes). I spent $4000 and then paid for 3D renderings of his feet. Their surgical recommendation was exploratory and it may not have worked. Thankfully I sought a second opinion from a Veterinary Orthopedic Sports Medicine, VOSM, and they looked at the CT scan and didn’t believe he had ED. They felt he needed to continue developing. They did see the issue in his feet. We did a strict rehab program and conservative management for 6 months. At age 2 he passed OFA’s for hips and elbows. He just passed his first Senior Hunt test and is fine.

Moe limped for 3-4 months on both front feet. It was awful to watch. My advice would be to see an orthopedic specialist that works with sporting dogs if it doesn’t get better on its own.
Yes I remember following your thread, was super happy for you when Moe came back as OFA passed for both! we haven't seen his paws before to be honest ( in terms of x ray) so that is something that I can consider. especially if I do the CT scans of his elbows they might be able to scan his foot and send that off to the specialist.

the vet mentioned one way to diagnosed ED was surgical exploration as well, but he didn't recommend that at all. We are short on good specialists here in Singapore.. the clinic i went to today say they regularly link up with a well known ortho specialist in singapore so that is an option as well.
 

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he is weight bearing, and it is a very slight limp. he presents with the head bobbing motion when he walks slowly like pacing/ambling around, but if he walks faster (like when i let him out for a pee break) its quite unnoticeable. ):

Do you think its alright to wait until he is 2 for the CT scan and be conservative and treat with pain meds now till then?
Yeah! There isn’t much they can do anyway. Conservative treatment can really go a long way and the Ct would probably be mostly for your benefit.
 

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When Duster was younger he developed a limp on a front leg and it turned out to be an injured toe. Toe injuries can be difficult to identify and diagnose. Might be worth considering. Best of luck with your investigations - hope you find an answer.
 
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I think you're wanting to spend big bucks finding something minor that will heal over time. I don't think it's elbow dysplasia. If carprofen fixes it, and it's only every three months, then fix it with carprofen every three months.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I think you're wanting to spend big bucks finding something minor that will heal over time. I don't think it's elbow dysplasia. If carprofen fixes it, and it's only every three months, then fix it with carprofen every three months.
Hahaha my fiancé has the same opinion!! For now I’m doing the course of carprofen and hoping the limp resolves ASAP. The vet mentioned that even if I do the CT and confirm ED, most likely little that can be done anyways as it will likely be a mild case where no surgical intervention can be done so just long term management and an ‘FYI’.
:(
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
When Duster was younger he developed a limp on a front leg and it turned out to be an injured toe. Toe injuries can be difficult to identify and diagnose. Might be worth considering. Best of luck with your investigations - hope you find an answer.
how did you figure out it was the toe instead of elbow? Did ED cross your mind?
 

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He looked at the x rays and said they appear normal and fine? Do you see anything in the x rays above? He is also almost fully grown currently 19 months already to be exactly ( the x rays were taken when he was 16 months). I didn't think of pano tbh as i thought that presents in younger pups!
It usually is in younger pups but have known it in slightly older ones . Hope he recovers quickly and is sound again. Annef
 

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how did you figure out it was the toe instead of elbow? Did ED cross your mind?
No, ED never crossed my mind. I thought it might be a soft tissue injury because there was no swelling or heat or anything obvious, and he didn't react to any kind of manipulation. When it didn't go away, I took him to a chiropractor specialized in dogs, and she found the problem. The vet subsequently confirmed it. There was nothing broken, it was a sprain. We treated it with anti-inflammatory medication followed by a few weeks of rest (leash exercise only), and he was fine afterwards. I think we were lucky that it didn't recur, because this type of injury sometimes does.
 
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