Radiographic findings of juvenile osteochondral conditions detected in 392 foals using a field radiographic protocol

J.-M. Denoix, S. Jacquet, J. Lepeule, N. Crevier-Denoix, J.-P. Valette, C. Robert
The Veterinary Journal
July 2013

Radiographic examination in young horses is commonly used to detect juvenile osteochondral conditions (JOCC). The aim of this study is to present the radiographic findings (RF) detected at the age of 6 months in the joints of 392 foals from three breeds: French Trotter Standardbreds (FT), Selle-Français Warmbloods (SF) and Thoroughbreds (TB). Radiographic examination included lateromedial views of the fore and hind digits, tarsi and stifles, and dorsopalmar projections of both carpi. In all areas RF indicative of JOCC were classified according to a four-grade severity scoring system.

Distribution and severity of the RF varied according to breed with the SF most affected. The most frequently affected site was the hind fetlock (28.3% of foals). The second most affected site was the fore fetlock in TB and SF, while the carpus and proximal tarsus were the second and third affected sites in FT. The radiographic protocol and grading system used can serve as a basis for field research and further studies on the evolution of RF, risk factors for JOCC or the correlation between RF and the subsequent athletic career of horses.

Large animal: