Tibial Tuberosity Advancement (TTA) for Cranial Cruciate Ligament (CCL) Rupture in Dogs
Written by: Rona Shapiro, M.S., D.V.M

A torn cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) in the knee is the most common cause for an orthopedic procedure to be performed in dogs. Several different techniques for repair can be performed and each has its benefits. This article will focus on the TTA. The TTA works by changing the dynamics of the knee so that the torn CCL is no longer needed for stabilization and comfort of the joint.

This is accomplished by advancing a portion of the tibia (the bone below the knee joint) so that the patellar tendon, which attaches from the knee cap to the tibia, will stabilize the joint. Once stabilized, the pain, abnormal movement, and progressive arthritis in the knee can be controlled.

The TTA is becoming a more popular choice for torn CCL. However, there are several other techniques you will need to discuss with your pet’s surgeon to determine which surgery is best. These include TPLO and Lateral Suture (also known as lateral wire). The advantage of the TTA is that it is less expensive than a TPLO. The TTA is also more stabilizing with a faster recovery than a Lateral Wire.The disadvantage of the TTA is, when the rare complication occurs, removal of the hardware can be very difficult.

The most common complications include: (1) infection at the surgery site and (2) broken implants, (3) delayed recovery due to overactivity because the dogs feel good after surgery. The pet owner is a very important part of preventing complications by: (1) using collars to prevent licking and damage to the surgery site and, (2) keeping patients quite while recovering until healing is complete. Dr. Alec Land performs all three procedures for torn CCL at the Diley Hill Animal Emergency Center. He will discuss all the procedures and work with you to determine which knee surgery is best for your pet.