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My dog was diagnosed with panosteitis.  What is the long term prognosis and treatment?

 

This disease affects primarily the long bones of large breed dogs and is often seen in dogs less than 2 years of age and frequently in puppies 8 to 12 months of age.  Panosteitis causes limping in dogs in any of the four legs, and sometimes can shift from one leg to another over the course of weeks.  The pain can be severe enough that the dog needs to be hospitalized, but most often they can be treated successfully with an anti-inflammatory medication.  The pain and limping usually subsides within 1 to 3 weeks, however in some dogs the pain can return in the future in another leg.  There seems to be no long term problems with panosteitis, so usually your veterinarian can give you an excellent prognosis.

The cause of panosteitis is still unknown despite the disease being recognized in dogs for over 50 years.  Theories such as fast bone growth and too rich a diet are thought to contribute, but it is not due to too much calcium or not enough vitamin C in the diet.  Interestingly, panosteitis was reported in a camel recently, though we know it does not occur in cats or people that we know.

Jonathan Miller, DVM,MS,DACVS (Surgery)

Dr. Miller received his DVM degree from the University of Illinois, completed a rotating internship at the Atlantic Veterinary College, a surgical internship in Houston, and completed a residency in surgery at Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Miller has interests in both general and orthopedic surgery with a special interest in laparoscopy and arthroscopy.