Patella Luxation Post Surgery

Gura, underwent surgery to correct the right luxating patella when she was 3.

Guri (L) & Gura (R)
Guri (L) & Gura (R)

November, 2011 – Began bi-weekley sessions. Initially, the body balance was off due to muscle loss on the right leg causing compensatory issues. It was difficult for her to use the leg mentally (fear of pain) and physiolosically (muscle memory) resulting in a very limited rage of motion.

2012 – Continued with regular routines of improving circulation and releasing adhesions (knots) particularly from inside of the hamstrings, the shoulders and the neck.

2013 – The lost muscles (biceps femoris) on the right is fully regained and the size of her hind legs are roughly seametrical.

What Her Owner Says

Both of my Miniature Dachshunds, Guri and Gura have been having massages in the last 2 years or so.  Guri previously had a surgery to correct her patellar luxation on both knees.  Gura had a surgery to correct her patellar luxation as well as twisted fibula on the right knee.   As far as you can see on  X-ray, Gura’s knee was positioned normally.  However, the muscles on the right leg were lost due to inactivity post-surgery and she no longer used the right leg at all. It was quite disappointing to see that despite the great ordeal of under-going surgery.  As I realized that I can’t expect the right leg to improve much more by conventional veterinary care alone, I was at a lost wondering how I could rehabilitate the leg until I heard about canine massage.

gurigra2At first, all I expected was to loosen and relax the muscles and joints so that she could walk on all four legs. Then, as we continued bi-weekly massage sessions,  I began to understand that:

  1. the body compensates for the leg and the compensatory issues also need to be addressed as well as the affected area,
  2. every time chemicals such as anesthetic, pain killer or antibiotics are taken, not only it lowers the immune system but the body accumulates toxin/waste build-up,
  3. too much exercise could be harmful at times as tired muscles full of lactic acid are likely to get injured, and
  4. massage could help detect any early signs of abnormality.

With these in mind, I have been continuing with regularly scheduled massage even after Gura’s full recovery.  Eri and I have been working together to try what works best for them, i.e., therapeutic massage for relaxation, lymphatic/circulatory massage for detoxing and metabolism, or mobility work and stretching to stimulate proprioception, etc.

gurigra-3When massage was new to them, they were nervous.  Now that they know that even slightly deeper pressure feels good, they sometimes doze off during a session.

I have trust in Western medicine in case of a disease or an injury, but at the same time, I believe in natural, preventative modalities such as massage, which could help release burden off of the body on a regular basis.  I now feel that on-going preventative care will lengthen the time I have left with my dogs, and for that, I believe having massage with Eri is a positive thing.”

– Fumio Nagata

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