Diseases and problems of the musculoskeletal system: legs and back

This specialty has fascinated Dr. Hiestand since the beginning of his veterinary career. A comprehensive clinical-orthopedic examination, the preliminary report, the observations of the owner in everyday life and almost 30 years of experience usually enable us to localize the problem.

Lameness examination

The so-called 'lameness examination' includes a comprehensive, detailed palpation of the legs and back with the muscles, ligaments and joints. Many questions are answered during this process: Not only whether the patient is in pain (twitching or cramping), but also the mobility or swelling of the joints can be assessed. The manual examination can also be used to relieve tension.

Spondylosis back/cross dog
Spondylosis back/cross dog

Imaging diagnostics

The findings are discussed with the patient owner. Subsequently, further examinations such as X-ray or ultrasound may be recommended. Performing diagnostic imaging often allows an accurate diagnosis. 

Based on the diagnosis, the prospects for a cure and the way to achieve it can be discussed. It is important to us that the pet owners are well informed about the type of movement disorder or disease their pet is suffering from. Together with the pet owners, we decide on the further procedure and the therapy. Of course, the patients are the center of attention!

Therapies for the treatment of diseases of the musculoskeletal system

  • Medication and feed supplements
  • Surgery
Physical therapies:

Clarifications for inherited disorders

There are some inherited disorders of the musculoskeletal system. Today, efforts are made not to use animals for breeding which suffer from such hereditary diseases. In order to detect these animals, preventive examinations must be carried out. Some of these preventive examinations can be performed at our facility:

  • Elbow dysplasia (ED, X-ray)
  • Hip joint dysplasia (HD, X-ray)
  • Shoulder joint dysplasia (X-ray)
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