Bacterial culture of the canine stifle joint following surgical repair of ruptured cranial cruciate ligament

C. M. Hill, M. G. Conzemius, G. K. Smith, P. M. McManus, D. Maloney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


The purpose of this project was to determine if chronic, low grade bacterial contamination is associated with an unsatisfactory outcome of cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) repair. Additionally, signalment and physical examination findings were compared between dogs doing well and dogs doing poorly. A sample of synovial fluid was obtained from the stifle joints of dogs with either a satisfactory or an unsatisfactory long term outcome following extra-capsular CCL repair. Aerobic and anaerobic bacterial cultures were obtained and antibiotic sensitivities determined. Significant differences were not found between the two groups with regards to the frequency of positive cultures, signalment, or synovial fluid analyses. The dogs with an unsatisfactory outcome did have significantly more pain, less range of motion, and less cranial drawer signs than dogs with a satisfactory outcome. Chronic, low grade bacterial contamination is not associated with an unsatisfactory clinical outcome and, in general, appears to be an uncommon sequela to CCL repair. Physical examination findings suggest that elimination of cranial drawer is not a major determinant of clinical success of the procedure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalVeterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1999


  • Cranial drawer
  • Cruciate ligament
  • Infection
  • Synovial fluid

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