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Annie is an adorable and excitable Staffordshire bull terrier. She was referred to Crown Vets Referrals for investigation of bilateral forelimb lameness. We discovered that Annie was suffering from significant elbow arthritis, which was likely due to an underlying developmental problem just like Diesel (see Diesel’s Story). Unfortunately Annie’s elbows were causing her a lot of discomfort and had passed a point where arthroscopic surgery could provide a predictable improvement.
Management of osteoarthritis in our family pets has traditionally focused on weight control and exercise modification with appropriate use of anti-inflammatory medication and joint supplements. Recent advances have suggested however that a novel joint cell preparation can provide additional benefits when used in combination with the above. A blood sample is collected from the patient and processed through a special filter system or centrifuge. This system allows us to collect a highly concentrated solution of platelets, which is then injected into the effected joints. Platelets are cells normally found in blood and are responsible for blood clotting. They have however been shown to contain a number of important growth factors and cell signalling molecules, which can provide an anti-inflammatory action and also change the cell environment to support regeneration of cartilage. This technique is known as Autologous Platelet Therapy.
Annie received Autologous Platelet Therapy into both her elbow joints and within a few short weeks her lameness improved dramatically. She is now enjoying a huge improvement in mobility and is back to running rings round her owners!