Fredo is a 7 year old neutered male cockapoo who presented with a brachial plexus complex injury following a jump out of the car that landed badly. OrthoPets has several different options for patients with this diagnosis and presentation depending on the level of function and therapeutic goals of the veterinary team.
The best guide for if a brachial plexus or radial nerve patient will be able return to “normal” function function with an orthosis is the presence of triceps function, but even without triceps function, an orthosis can still benefit a patient by protecting the paw and distal limb from repeated trauma from dragging, as well as prevent further contracture of the limb, or, as was the goal in Fredo’s case, to actually decrease the contracture by dynamically forcing extension at the carpus and paw to return to a more normal alignment.
To accomplish this goal, OrthoPets built an all-caudal shell articulated carpus, articulated paw orthosis for Fredo, which featured extension assist hinges at the carpus and paw, and extension limiting straps to allow his veterinarian to modulate how much extension the hinges force at the carpus and paw as needed. At initial fitting, Fredo did well, but after the initial break-in period, he showed that he struggled to bear weight and needed more static support, so the device was sent back to be locked out with a lightweight aluminum bar at the carpus.
In the new configuration, Fredo has done well and continues to thrive in his rehabilitation program to keep him active!