Concurrent bucket handle meniscal tear treated with arthroscopic partial meniscectomy does not influence midterm outcomes after TPLO

Charles Saban, Laura Hebrard, Joséphine Roels, Mathieu Harel, Véronique Livet, Thibaut Cachon
Am J Vet Res. 2023 Aug 8;84(10):1-8. doi: 10.2460/ajvr.23.05.0102.

Objective: To assess the effect of arthroscopic partial meniscectomy in dogs with bucket handle meniscal tears and tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO), compared with dogs with cranial cruciate ligament rupture and no meniscal tear treated by TPLO alone.

Animals: 30 client-owned dogs with cranial cruciate rupture treated by either TPLO and arthroscopy alone if the meniscus was normal (normal meniscus [NM] group, n = 14) or by TPLO and an arthroscopic partial meniscectomy if a bucket handle tear was diagnosed (meniscal tear [MT] group, n = 16).

Methods: Medical records, lameness score, and symmetry gait analysis parameters were retrospectively collected from patient records preoperatively (PreO), then at 1, 3, and 6 months postoperatively (M1, M3, and M6, respectively). Osteoarthritic (OA) radiographic score was performed and compared at PreO and M6.

Results: PreO gait analysis parameters were lower in the MT group (P < 0.005). In the MT group, the lameness score significantly improved between PreO and M1, and there were no significant differences between groups at M6. OA score was significantly higher in the MT group at PreO and M6. However, postoperative progression of OA did not differ between the 2 groups (P = 0.16).

Clinical relevance: Treatment for meniscal tear results in a significant improvement in lameness, with postoperative outcomes at 6 months comparable with dogs with intact menisci. Despite having significant osteoarthritic lesions at all time points, the progression of osteoarthritis is similar between dogs with meniscal tears and those with intact menisci.