How painful is a TPLO?

Jun 03, 2024

With effective pain management, dogs can undergo major surgery relatively comfortably. Typically, the first 48 hours after surgery are the most painful, but pre-emptive (before the pain even starts) analgesia goes a long way in preventing postoperative pain. At AESC, our board-certified anesthesiologist performs ultrasound-guided nerve blocks prior to surgery, preventing your dog from feeling anything at all in the knee for about 18 hours. At the end of surgery, a long-acting numbing infusion is injected, which has been demonstrated to last for up to 72 hours. These two techniques greatly reduce the need for narcotics and their associated side effects. We do recommend hospitalizing TPLO patients overnight for a non-narcotic pain medication infusion. Overnight hospitalization also allows our overnight doctors to monitor and treat your dog for any breakthrough pain. In addition, we send your dog home with oral pain medications. AESC is open 24/7, and we are happy to answer any questions or concerns you have about your dog’s condition at any time.