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Assessment of the effects of diet and physical rehabilitation on radiographic findings and markers of synovial inflammation in dogs following tibial plateau leveling osteotomy

Verpaalen, Valentine D., Baltzer, Wendy I., Smith-Ostrin, Sarah, Warnock, Jennifer J., Stang, Bernadette, Ruaux, Craig G.
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 2018 v.252 no.6 pp. 701-709
adults, animal feeding, arthroscopy, cranial cruciate ligament, dogs, dried foods, inflammation, interleukin-1beta, omega-3 fatty acids, osteoarthritis, osteotomy, pet foods, physical therapy, prospective studies, prostaglandins, radiography, synovial fluid, test meals
OBJECTIVE To determine the effects of an omega-3 fatty acid and protein–enriched diet, physical rehabilitation, or both on radiographic findings and markers of synovial inflammation in dogs following tibial plateau leveling osteotomy and arthroscopic surgery for treatment of cranial cruciate ligament disease. DESIGN Randomized, prospective clinical trial. ANIMALS 48 dogs with unilateral cranial cruciate ligament disease. PROCEDURES Dogs were randomly assigned to receive a dry omega-3 fatty acid and protein–enriched dog food formulated to support joint health (test food [TF]), a dry food formulated for adult canine maintenance (control food [CF]), TF plus rehabilitation, or CF plus rehabilitation after surgery. Synovial fluid prostaglandin (PG) E2 and interleukin-1β concentrations, radiographic osteoarthritis scores, osteotomy site healing, and patellar ligament thickness were assessed at predetermined time points up to 6 months after surgery. RESULTS Dogs that received CF had significantly higher PGE2 concentrations over time following surgery than did dogs that received TF, regardless of rehabilitation status. Synovial fluid interleukin-1β concentrations did not change over time in any groups. Diet and rehabilitation were both associated with osteoarthritis scores, with significantly lower scores over time for dogs that received TF versus CF and for dogs that underwent rehabilitation versus those that did not. Proportions of dogs with complete osteotomy healing 8 and 24 weeks after surgery were significantly lower for dogs that received TF than for dogs that received CF, regardless of rehabilitation status. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results suggested that feeding the TF can result in lower synovial fluid PGE2 concentrations and that both the TF and rehabilitation can reduce progression of osteoarthritis in the 6 months following tibial plateau leveling osteotomy; clinical relevance of slower osteotomy healing in dogs fed the TF was unclear.