Patella Tendon Tear

Priced from $2,600 - $3,100
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What is a Patella tendon tear repair?

A patella tendon tear is a rupture of the tendon that connects the patella (kneecap) to the top of the tibia. Disruption of this tendon results in an inability of the animal to bear weight properly because the body has no/reduced ability to pull on the tibia to keep its hind leg straight.

How do they occur?

Because the patella tendon is a large and strong structure, trauma to it is uncommon and usually the result of foreign object penetration. The case described in this article was caused by a pig tusk tearing the patella tendon and causing trauma to the groove at the end of the femur.

Treatment options

Repairing the patella tendon is a straightforward procedure to remove any uneven edges and suture the torn pieces together. However, tendons heal slowly, and sutures alone are not strong enough to keep the tendon together long enough to heal while still allowing the dog to walk on the leg.

We use a drill to create horizontal bone tunnels through the distal patella and the proximal tibia, then insert and tighten Arthrex fibre wire through these, essentially creating an artificial patella tendon that is strong enough to resist any loading bearing forces when the dog walks to allow time for the patella tendon to heal properly.



We perform patella tendon tear procedures for $2,600 to $3,100, around a third of the $6,000 - $8,000 + commonly charged at referral centres.

Optional pre-anaesthetic blood test available for all surgeries (additional cost)


Recovery and aftercare

Tendon tears take a long time to heal fully, so we recommend cage rest for six weeks, and toilet walks on a leash. These cases frequently succeed very quickly, and it is critical to resist the temptation to begin walking the dog too soon. We recommend six weeks of increasing the length of lead walks after six weeks before moving to off-lead activities.

Dr. Scot Plummer

Meet Dr. Scot Plummer


Dr Plummer has always had a deep love for animals and graduated from the University of Queensland with Honours. in his Bachelor of Veterinary Science. After the success of his Brisbane clinic, Dr Plummer has launched Melbourne Pet Surgery with the goal of lowering the cost of high-quality pet care for all Melburnians.

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