Hello Dr., I am so grateful for this site and for doctors like you who…

Hello Dr., I am so grateful for this site and for doctors like you who are willing to help answer questions for free.

I apologize if this is a little lengthy.

I fostered orphaned kittens for five years before adopting the last two as my own, forever-cats. Mira and Ramsay – they are my entire world! On the 17th, Mira had surgery (the Tightrope procedure) to repair three severed ligaments in her knee. I don’t know how she was injured – she is indoor. This has been extremely hard on her and on me – as you know, the recovery time is difficult.

Before the surgery, her knee literally "fell" to either side when she took steps. Now, she is limping but it is a "straight limp". She is weight bearing well and seems to have good ROM. She even curls her toes.

The surgeon was board certified and well respected, but he is so hard to get in touch with (he comes to my vet as a visiting surgeon because there are none close by). Mira went for a check up last Wednesday and all was going as expected.

I have a few questions:

*Do you see this in cats very often? Do they generally recover well?

*I am absolutely paranoid about her breaking the tightrope. She is confined to a room and does not jump, but she does play with her toys and "trots" around them, and also kicks when I am trying to give her medicine. Should I be so worried about movements like that, or would it take much more force to break a tightrope?

*I would think that since cats are so light, tightropes would be a great choice – Do tightropes fail in cats often?

*Do you recommend laser therapy or any other PT for cats (since they can’t do underwater treadmills, sadly)?

*I spend all day with her, watching her shows (she likes fish and bird documentaries) and playing with her toys. But, Mira is starting to be depressed that she can’t play with her brother or go out of her room. Are there any remedies for this boredom, or maybe a natural sedative to pass the time quicker for her (Valerian maybe?)?

From one animal lover to another:
Thank you thank you thank you in advance. I spend hours each day learning more about all this. But, there are very few resources online for cats with ligament injuries – they all seem to be about dogs.

(I’ve attached a photo of her, 5 days post-op, rolling next to her cat grass). She is in good health otherwise, 10 lbs and will be 2 in July.

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Krista Magnifico
6 years ago

Hello Molly, Thanks for visiting and for being such a wonderful mom! What a cutie your kitty is, she certainly looks like she is recovering well.. So, I have a few comments: 1. I have not seen many cats with this injury, although it can happen. I have however seen many indoor cats with many traumatic injuries, like broken bones, etc. and in most cases their parents have no idea how it happened. 2. Tightrope procedure is a relatively new procedure but in the right hands (and if your surgeon was boarded then your kitty was in the right hands)… Read more »