Vet Comp Orthop Traumatol 2017; 30(05): 364-370
DOI: 10.3415/VCOT-16-05-0073
Clinical Communication
Schattauer GmbH

Prevalence, treatment and outcome of patellar luxation in dogs in Italy

A retrospective multicentric study (2009–2014)
Francesca Bosio
1  Clinica Veterinaria Villa Francesca, Seriate, BG, Italy
Antonello Bufalari
2  University of Perugia, Department of Veterinary Medicine, Perugia, Italy
Bruno Peirone
3  University of Turin, Department of Animal Pathology, Grugliasco, Turin, Italy
Massimo Petazzoni
4  Clinica Veterinaria Milano Sud, Orthopaedics and Traumatology, Peschiera Borromeo, MI, Italy
Aldo Vezzoni
5  Clinica Veterinaria Vezzoni, Cremona, Italy
› Author Affiliations
Further Information

Publication History

Received: 12 May 2016

Accepted: 12 June 2017

Publication Date:
12 October 2017 (online)


Objective: To determine the prevalence of patellar luxation in dogs in Italy and its relation to signalment, the frequency and the type of postoperative complications and the outcome of treatment, and to compare the findings with those of other studies.

Materials and methods: The medical records from four referral clinics were searched for dogs with orthopaedic disorders referred from 2009 to 2014. From these data, the records of dogs with patellar luxation were identified, and the signalment, age and body weight, grade, side and direction of patellar luxation, treatment, postoperative complications, and outcome were retrieved. Univariate and multivariate statistical analyses were used to evaluate the data.

Results: Of 8,694 canine orthopaedic cases, fractures not included, patellar luxation was diagnosed in 559 dogs (801 stifles). Mixed breed dogs were most commonly affected (18%), 85% of the luxations were medial, and 52% of the dogs were female. Of the 559 dogs examined, 400 (574 stifles) met the inclusion criteria for treatment evaluation. Minor complications occurred in five percent of the dogs, and major complications in 16%, including recurrence of patellar luxation in seven percent of the dogs. The outcome was good in 88% of stifles, fair in two percent, and poor in 10%.

Clinical significance: Although patellar luxation was more common in small breed dogs, it also was diagnosed in a significant number of large breed dogs, which included medial patellar luxation in 73% and lateral patellar luxation in 27% of stifles. Body weight and grade of luxation were the only variables statistically correlated with surgical complications.