Nondisplaced fractures can be complete or incomplete. Both conditions present with lameness and joint effusion. The nature of the fracture is confirmed with radiographs. Lateral nondisplaced fractures most commonly occur in the forelimb but can also occur in the hind limb. Bilateral fractures have been diagnosed in Standardbred horses.
A complete set of radiographs of the metacarpophalangeal joint is made, including
Both oblique views
125° dorsopalmar skyline view (as illustrated).
This x-ray shows a complete fracture.
This x-ray shows an incomplete fracture.
Mechanism of the injury
These injuries occur as a result of cyclic trauma associated with racing. Warmblood sportshorses are also prone to these type of fractures. Again a repetitive cycling trauma is the thought to be responsible for these fractures.