Fibro-Osseous Lesions Of The Craniofacial Complex In Horses: 30 Cases (2001-2019)

Bridget F. Nottle, Dane M. Tatarniuk, Fred J. Caldwell, Chris D. Bell, Stephanie S. Caston, Paul T. Merkatoris, Alex M. Gillen, Scott A. Katzman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: To describe the presentation, diagnosis, treatment, and outcome for horses with fibro-osseous lesions of the craniofacial complex. Study design: Retrospective multicenter case series. Animals: Thirty horses evaluated for fibro-osseous lesions of the skull from January 1, 2001 through December 31, 2019 in four centers. Methods: Medical records were reviewed for signalment, clinical presentation, histological and diagnostic imaging findings, treatment instituted, and outcome. Long-term outcome information was obtained by owner questionnaire or the medical record. Results: Diagnoses included ossifying fibroma in 20 of 30 horses, osteoma in eight of 30 horses, and fibrous dysplasia in two of 30 horses. Twelve of 30 lesions were diagnosed in horses <1 year old, and 20 of 30 lesions originated from the rostral mandible. The most common treatment was rostral mandibulectomy. Recurrence was not reported after complete excision. Incomplete excision was confirmed in eight horses (four ossifying fibromas, three osteomas, and one fibrous dysplasia), and follow-up information was available for seven horses. Recurrence occurred in one horse, while six horses had long-term resolution of clinical signs. Prognosis for survival and return to use was excellent in 23 horses with long-term follow-up. Conclusion: Fibro-osseous lesions were uncommon in this multicenter study; they were most commonly diagnosed in young animals and most frequently affected the rostral mandible. Long-term survival was excellent. Clinical significance: The definitive diagnosis of fibro-osseous lesions of the craniofacial complex in horses is made from results of histopathology and cannot be determined on the basis of clinical presentation alone. Surgical excision is indicated, and prognosis can be favorable even when complete surgical margins are not obtained.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)383-392
Number of pages10
JournalVeterinary Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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