Fragmented palmar metacarpophalangeal sesamoids in dogs: A long-term evaluation

K. G. Mathews, P. D. Koblik, J. G. Whitehair, Philip H Kass, C. Bradley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Long-term clinical and radiographic response to surgical and conservative management of 22 dogs with fragmented sesamoids was evaluated. Mean follow-up was 3.6 years (range = 3 months to 11.0 years). Initial (retrospective) and follow-up (prospective) radiographs of the affected palmar sesamoids and associated metacarpophalangeal joints were evaluated using a graded scoring system. A lameness evaluation and physical examination were performed at follow-up in a blinded manner. In addition, owners were asked to complete a questionnaire regarding their pet's thoracic limb lameness. There was not any difference between groups (sesamoidectomy, conservative management, incidental finding) in age at onset, duration of lameness prior to therapy, body weight at treatment, time to follow-up, number of affected joints, nor owner perceptions of whether they thought the lameness improved, resolved, or recurred, and whether or not they were pleased with the outcome. Sesamoid fragmentation treated by sesamoidectomy resulted in significantly greater progression of radiographic changes that were consistent with degenerative joint disease. Chronic lameness resolved or improved to the point of owner satisfaction with conservative therapy in most cases. Continued lameness, or recurrent, although improved lameness associated with heavy activity, occurred following surgical extirpation of the affected sesamoids in many cases. Given these findings, a more conservative approach to the treatment of chronic lameness associated with sesamoid fragmentation may be warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7-14
Number of pages8
JournalVeterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2001


  • Conservative management
  • Metacarpophalangeal
  • Sesainoidectoniy
  • Sesamoid

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • veterinary(all)


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