Koda and his family came to see Dr. Edinger in March of 2017. Having been diagnosed with bilateral hip dysplasia when he was a puppy, Koda had gradually developed more osteoarthritis. His family had been managing his hip osteoarthritis for a couple of years with anti-inflammatories and narcotics , but this was no longer keeping him comfortable.
During their visit, Dr. Edinger and Koda’s family discussed the options available, including Total Hip Replacement (THR) and Femoral Head Ostectomy (FHO). Koda’s family decided to go ahead with the left FHO, understanding that a successful surgery coupled with several months of consistent physical rehabilitation would be necessary to getting Koda comfortable using his left rear leg again.
In April 2017, Koda visited Edinger Surgical Options for his left FHO. He came through surgery like a champ, and went home the next day holding up his left rear leg, a behavior that is expected after FHO. Koda’s Mom took the week after Koda’s surgery off from work, having arranged to have daily therapy sessions with HEAL Integrative Veterinary Center (HEAL) beginning 7 days after his surgery. At his 2 week recheck with Dr. Edinger, Koda was starting to touch his foot down on his left rear leg when walking slowly. Dr. Edinger and HEAL encouraged Koda’s family to gradually increase his walking distance while maintaining a slow pace, to really engage his left thigh muscles. Koda continued to see HEAL weekly for guided land exercises and underwater treadmill work. At 10 weeks out from surgery, Koda was comfortable with full range-of-motion (ROM) in his left hip, and was utilizing his left rear leg all of the time. Koda even began to bear more weight on his left side than his right side!
By mid-summer Koda’s family had expanded, and the sole focus on his rehabilitation took a back seat to the excitement of his new human baby brother! When we saw him again 22 weeks after surgery, Koda’s family was settling into a comfortable home routine that included Koda’s 1-hour walks every day, and he was using his left rear leg all of the time. Though he was back to playing fetch, Koda would get sore after a few retrieves. Dr Edinger found that there was still about a 2cm circumference difference between his right and left thighs, so he recommended increasing Koda’s walking coupled with some muscle building exercises to improve strength on the left side. 30 weeks after his left FHO Koda was playing fetch with no lameness!
“Koda has struggled his entire life with his hip dysplasia and even though we were able to manage it for the first four years of his life it still prevented him from living a normal dog life. Earlier this year  when we noticed that we were no longer able to keep him comfortable we had tons of questions and were very nervous about our options for helping him. These fears quickly subsided after you [Dr. Edinger] and your staff spent so much time talking to us and answering all of our questions, we really appreciated this!
You performed Koda’s FHO in April and now 8 months later I can honestly say that it was the best decision we have ever made for him. The road to recovery was long and we definitely had our set backs, but today he is stronger than he has ever been. Koda’s favorite thing to do is play fetch. This is something that we used to have to limit greatly because a couple of long throws would leave him sore and limping. Yesterday we went to play fetch and I let him play until he was tired enough to stop bringing the ball back. Despite all this running he never once stepped with a limp or cried from pain/soreness. This is the first time he has ever been able to do his favorite thing entirely pain free!!!
In addition to being able to play endless amounts of fetch Koda is currently on ZERO medications for the first time in his entire life!!! So again, thank you for all you and your staff did for Koda and for us. We could not be any happier with the outcome and deeply appreciate the honest opinions you gave us when we were struggling to make a decision regarding his surgery.”
– Kristi Heid