Equine idiopathic cheek teeth fractures: Part 3: A hospital‐based survey of 68 referred horses (1999–2005)
. REASONS FOR PERFORMING STUDY: There is limited information available on the more serious sequellae of idiopathic cheek teeth (CT) fractures.
OBJECTIVES: To obtain information on clinical and ancillary diagnostic findings in referred horses with idiopathic CT fractures.
METHODS: Details of all horses suffering from idiopathic CT fractures referred to the Equine Hospital at the University of Edinburgh 1999-2005 were examined, and information concerning fracture patterns, clinical and ancillary diagnostic findings, treatments and long-term response to treatments were obtained and analysed.
RESULTS: A total of 60 maxillary and 17 mandibular idiopathic CT fractures were diagnosed in 68 horses. Fracture patterns included maxillary CT lateral slab fractures (45%), maxillary CT midline sagittal fractures (16%) and various other patterns of maxillary CT fractures (17%). In the mandibular CT, lateral slab fractures were found (12%) and various other CT fracture patterns were present in 10%. The more centrally positioned CT (maxillary and mandibular Triadan 08s and 09) were preferentially fractured. Clinical signs included quidding in 47% of cases; bitting and behavioural problems (28%); signs of apical infection, including bony swellings and nasal discharge (21%); anorexia/weight loss (15%); halitosis (13%); and buccal food impaction (12%). The treatment of all cases was conservative whenever possible and included corrective rasping of the remaining tooth (46% of cases); oral extraction of the smaller and loose dental fragment (32%) and extraction of the entire fractured tooth by oral extraction (28%) or by repulsion (13%). Prophylactic treatment of adjacent, nonfractured CT with carious infundibula was possibly of value in preventing further midline sagittal maxillary CT fractures.
CONCLUSIONS: Horses referred with idiopathic CT fractures frequently have clinical signs of apical infection of the fractured CT and these teeth require extraction, orally if possible. More conservative treatment of idiopathic CT fractures without signs of gross apical infection can resolve clinical signs in most cases.
POTENTIAL RELEVANCE: In the absence of apical infection, extraction of only the loose dental fragments of CT with idiopathic fractures is usually successful.