Mohawk the Yorkie is lucky to be alive after being mowed down by a careless driver. Dr. Rose Lemarie explains, “His pelvis is broken in several places. He’s got several pubic and ischial fractures, but his main injury is something called a sacroiliac luxation, which means that his ilium has popped off of his spine.”
Mohawk landed on Southeast Veterinary Specialists’ operating table, under the steady hands of Dr. Lemarie. During surgery, it takes a host of machines and a team of specialists to ensure his vital signs remain steady. “We monitor his CO2 and his respiration and his blood pressure over there, so that we can tell when he needs a breath.”
Something like a fracture isn’t the only problem that can pop up when a dog is hit by a car. Damage to internal organs is a big possibility, but little Mohawk got everything checked out and he checked out well! Dr. Lemarie says, “They can have ruptured bladders, they can have abdominal trauma. So it can make them pretty sick little dogs and that kind of stuff is usually more scary than the actual pelvis fracture.”
An x-ray shows exactly what Dr. Lemarie is hoping to fix. Mohawk’s pelvis is broken in several places. If she can secure the ilium, Dr. Lemarie says the rest of the fractures will heal themselves. She takes a dorsal approach and then separates the muscle from the bone, to expose the primary break. ”Once we’re able to see and isolate it, we’ll be able to actually get the screw across there.”
It’s a careful procedure, lining up the hole she’s drilled and inserting a 28 mm lag screw to secure the joint. A post-op x-ray shows she “hit the nail on the head”– so to speak! Mohawk’s ilium is back where it should be and he’s off to the ICU for some well-deserved rest and relaxation.