Forums » Joint Health

Growth Plate Injury - What are the Consequences?

  • July 12, 2015 11:26 PM EDT

    Could you talk about the impact of injury to the growth plate in formation of premature closure of the ulna. All puppies are active - what kinds of risks should we concentrate on limiting and during what time frame?

    • 146 posts
    July 12, 2015 11:35 PM EDT

    Answered by: James L. Cook, DVM, PhD, DACVS, DACVSMR:

    The growth plates are all susceptible to injury until the time of skeletal maturity (varies from about 9 months to 18 months of age depending on breed) because they are comprised of cartilage during growth. The distal ulnar growth plate may be more susceptible to injury that causes premature closure because of its relative size, shape and location. It is also relatively more problematic than some other growth plate injuries because it is responsible for 85% of the growth of the ulna and the radius and ulna must grow synchronously for forelimb alignment and elbow and wrist growth and function to be normal. Damage to the distal ulnar growth plate is typically caused by jump down injuries, falls, limbs getting caught in something, or motor vehicle accidents.