Gertys Story - Fracture Repair


Gerty was involved in a hit and run accident and consequently fractured both the radius and ulna of the right foreleg in March 2012, she was taken to see a specialist orthopaedic surgeon who performed a fracture repair using implants to stabilise the bones.

Gerty first came to us in June 2012 suffering with ongoing lameness from the fracture; the vets had said that she could start her hydrotherapy to see if her lameness decreased with non weight bearing exercise and to help build the surrounding muscles up around the leg.

When she first came to see us she was only able to do a maximum of 10min on lead walks twice a day, any longer and she would become very uncomfortable. The vet had advised that she do 15mins twice a day but this was just too much for her to cope with at the moment.

We started her treatment with very gentle hydrotherapy sessions. She started off by doing a maximum of 2 mins with a few rests in the pool allowing her to move freely but supporting the leg. Gerty didn't experience any discomfort after her session and her lameness levels remained the same for a while without any further deterioration.

Gerty came to us on a weekly basis for the next 2months and slowly built up her time that she spent exercising in the pool. Her muscle mass had increased surrounding the leg and her lameness levels decreased. She also lost a small amount of weight but had really toned up and her core stability had improved a lot.

Gerty went back to the Orthopaedic surgeon in August 2012 for a check up and to assess her progress so far. She also had further radiographs to look at how the bone healing progress was going. The vet stated that the bones were now bridging well and that he wanted to encourage her to use her leg more and increase exercise time.

Over the next 3months we gradually increased her session lengths and built her up to a total of 14mins with rests in the hydrotherapy pool. Gerty's mum was also increasing her walks at home and was able to do a lot more than when she first attended hydrotherapy. She was now able to do an hour's exercise on and off lead and was enjoying her walk without suffering any pain during or afterwards.

Gerty recently went back to the vets for further radiographs to check on the progress of the bone healing and the vet had reported that there have been no complications with the implants and that she was showing no signs of discomfort on direct palpitation over the implants or on manipulation of the joints. The radiographs showed further bone healing and the vet was pleased with her progression. The vet is now looking at removing the implants.

Gerty continues to improve as time goes by and mum is really pleased with her progress and is continuing her rehabilitation with us for the foreseeable future.