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Measurement of Humeroradial and Humeroulnar Transarticular Joint Forces in the Canine Elbow Joint After Humeral Wedge and Humeral Slide Osteotomies

Authors

  • DAVID R. MASON B Vet Med,

    1. JD Wheat Veterinary Orthopedic Research Laboratory, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA
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  • KURT S. SCHULZ DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVS,

    1. JD Wheat Veterinary Orthopedic Research Laboratory, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA
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  • YUKIHIRO FUJITA BVSc, MS,

    1. JD Wheat Veterinary Orthopedic Research Laboratory, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA
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  • PHILIP H. KASS DVM, PhD, Diplomate ACPVM (Epidemiology),

    1. JD Wheat Veterinary Orthopedic Research Laboratory, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA
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  • SUSAN M. STOVER DVM, PhD, Diplomate ACVS

    1. JD Wheat Veterinary Orthopedic Research Laboratory, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA
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  • Presented in abstract form at the 30th Annual Conference of the Veterinary Orthopedic Society, Steamboat Springs, CO, 2003.

  • Supported by the Center for Companion Animal Health, University of California-Davis, Davis, CA.

  • Dr. Mason's current address is Las Vegas Veterinary Referral Center, 8650 West Tropicana Avenue, Suite B-107, Las Vegas, NV.

  • Dr. Schulz current address is Burlington Veterinary Specialists, Williston, VT.

  • Dr. Fujita's current address is Division of Veterinary Surgery, Graduate School of Veterinary Medicine, Nippon Veterinary and Animal Science University, 1-7-1 Kyonan-cho, Musashino-shi, Tokyo 180-8602, Japan.

Address reprint requests to Dr. Kurt Schulz, DVM, MS, Diplomate ACVS, 200 Commerce St, Williston, VT 05495.
E-mail: ksschulz@mindspring.com.

Abstract

Objective— To determine the effect of humeral wedge and humeral slide osteotomies on force distribution between the articular surfaces of the humerus and the radius and ulna in normal canine thoracic limbs.

Study Design— In vitro mechanical testing.

Sample population— Cadaveric canine right thoracic limbs (n=12).

Methods— Transarticular elbow force maps were measured using a tactile array pressure sensor in elbow joints of axially aligned limbs under 200 N axial load before and after humeral wedge and humeral slide osteotomies.

Results— Loading induced 2 distinct areas of high forces that corresponded with the proximal articular surfaces of the radius and ulna. Mean force on the proximal articular surface of the ulna was reduced by 25% and 28% after 4 and 8 mm sliding osteotomies, respectively. Statistically significant differences were not observed for the wedge osteotomies.

Conclusion— Humeral slide osteotomy significantly decreases force on the proximal articular surface of the ulna.

Clinical Relevance— The proximal articular surface of the ulna contributes significantly to load transfer through the canine elbow joint. Abnormalities that significantly increase this force might contribute to canine elbow dysplasia, specifically fragmentation of the medial coronoid process and osteochondritis dissecans of the medial aspect of the humeral condyle. Under the conditions studied, the overall reduction in mean joint surface force across the proximal articular surface of the ulna after humeral slide osteotomy indicates that this technique merits further investigation for potential use in medial compartmental osteoarthritis of the canine elbow joint.

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