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Dr. John
Dr. John, Texas Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 10967
Experience:  Over 14 years of clinical veterinary experience
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Our cat is 13 years old and suffered a radius/ulnar break -

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Our cat is 13 years old and suffered a radius/ulnar break - means unknown. Our vet, following xrays, would not do surgery himself and recommended an orthopedic surgeon to install a plate. Due to age, will healing be difficult for Red? He is sweet-natured and loves the outdoors but we have no problem keeping him inside. My concern is will the surgery do him in and is it significantly riskier on an older cat?
Hello. My name isXXXXX will be happy to help you. Just like in any other mammals, the older that a cat is, the longer it will take to heal. If it is a simple break, though, it should heal just fine. In a kitten, it may take 3 weeks to heal. In an older cat, it could take 4-6 weeks. That is the difference. Luckily, cat fractures in general tend to heal better than dogs, or us for that matter. Age isn't really a factor with anesthesia. If there are any concurrent diseases, such as heart, liver or kidney problems; then that does increase the risk of anesthesia. In general, anesthetic protocols are very safe. Anesthetic deaths are not very common at all. Just make sure that a full blood workup is done to look for any underlying problems. If you want to be extra cautious, request a cardiac ultrasound to make sure there are no underlying heart problems. A Pro-BNP blood test can check for underlying heart issues as well. Please let me know if you have any other questions or concerns. Hope this helps.

My goal is to make sure that you get all your question answered and all the information you need. If you are satisfied with my answer, please rate it. If you feel like it is not helpful to you, or if there is more information you need, please respond back to me before rating. Realize that our conversation is not intended to diagnose or treat a condition. There has to be a valid veterinary-client-patient relationship established with an exam, according to law. You should always follow up with your vet.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Well, you vouched for safety and success rates but what about the question of an alternative treatment or remedy? (It was asked in the original information.)

I am sorry. I didn't see that question. It depends on the type of fracture and where it is located. A simple fracture below the elbows and knees may heal with just a splint or cast. If the radius/ulnar break is clean and not displaced, a cast or splint are possible. Surgery offers a lot more stabilization of the fracture site. For an older cat, it would be the best option for healing the fracture. Other than splinting, casting and surgery; there are no other treatment options. Hope this helps.
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