Radiographic Measurements of Hoof Balance Are Significantly Influenced by a Horse’s Stance.

Abstract: Hoof balance radiographs are commonly used as the basis for corrective farriery decision-making in horses, however there are limited published data quantifying effects of the stance of the horse or the horizontal radiographic beam angle. In this analytical study, the influence of variation of the horse's stance in the craniocaudal and lateromodial plane on hoof balance measurements as well as the influence of variation of the horizontal radiographic beam angle on dorsopalmar hoof balance measurements was examined. Distal left thoracic limb lateromedial radiographs were acquired using a standardized protocol while varying the craniocaudal stance of five horses, each selected to be sound and conformationally normal. Dorsopalmar foot radiographs were acquired while varying the lateromedial stance; and variable angle horizontal beam dorsopalmar foot radiographs were acquired while keeping the limb position constant. Analyses of measurements demonstrated that hoof pastern angle had a linear relationship (R = 0.89, P < 0.001) with craniocaudal stance of the horse. The relationship of joint angle and stance was greater for the distal interphalangeal joint angle (R = 0.89, P < 0.001) than the proximal interphalangeal joint angle (R = 0.65, P = 0.001). The distal phalanx angle did not change with craniocaudal stance variation. The proximal interphalangeal joint width, distal interphalangeal joint width, or distal phalanx height did not change with lateromedial stance variation, nor within a 15 degree dorsolateral to caudomedial and dorsomedial to caudolateral variation from the dorsopalmar axis. Findings indicated that positioning of the thoracic limb needs to be considered during radiographic interpretation and decision-making for corrective farriery.
Publication Date: 2016-11-17 PubMed ID: 27859901DOI: 10.1111/vru.12443Google Scholar: Lookup
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  • Journal Article

Summary

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The research article discusses how the stance of a horse significantly influences radiographic measurements of its hoof balance, often used in determining the need for corrective farriery. As such, the study suggests that the horse’s limb posture should be taken into account when interpreting these radiographs and making decisions related to hoof maintenance.

Study Design and Procedure

  • The study was analytical, and it investigated the impact of two variables on hoof balance measurements: the craniocaudal and lateromodial stance of a horse, and the horizontal radiographic beam angle.
  • Five healthy, sound horses were selected, and their left distal thoracic limb lateromedial radiographs were taken following a standardized protocol. This process was repeated while varying the craniocaudal stance of the horses.
  • The team also acquired dorsopalmar foot radiographs while varying the horses’ lateromedial stance, along with variable angle horizontal beam dorsopalmar foot radiographs. The horses’ limb position was kept constant during this process.

Key Findings

  • The team found that the hoof pastern angle and the craniocaudal stance of the horse had a linear relationship. In statistical terms, this was denoted by a strong correlation coefficient (R=0.89) proving that the two are closely related.
  • The researchers observed differing relationships between joint angle and stance at varying locations. The distal interphalangeal joint angle showed a significant relationship (R=0.89) with the stance, while the proximal interphalangeal joint angle showed a less robust but still significant relationship (R=0.65).
  • Other elements such as the proximal interphalangeal joint width, distal interphalangeal joint width, and the distal phalanx’s height remained constant regardless of the lateromedial stance position. This constancy held true even when varying within a 15-degree spectrum along the dorsolateral to caudomedial and dorsomedial to caudolateral axes from the dorsopalmar axis.
  • However, the angle of the distal phalanx remained unaltered despite any variations in the craniocaudal stance.

Implications of the Study

  • The results indicate that the stance of the horse’s thoracic limb plays a crucial role in the radiographic interpretation of hoof balance. Thus, these considerations need to be factored in during decision-making processes pertaining to corrective farriery.

Cite This Article

APA
Pauwels FE, Rogers CW, Wharton H, Flemming H, Wightman PF, Green RW. (2016). Radiographic Measurements of Hoof Balance Are Significantly Influenced by a Horse’s Stance. Vet Radiol Ultrasound, 58(1), 10-17. https://doi.org/10.1111/vru.12443

Publication

ISSN: 1740-8261
NlmUniqueID: 9209635
Country: England
Language: English
Volume: 58
Issue: 1
Pages: 10-17

Researcher Affiliations

Pauwels, Frederik E
  • Institute of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
Rogers, Chris W
  • Institute of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
Wharton, Heather
  • Institute of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
Flemming, Hailey
  • Institute of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
Wightman, Paul F
  • Institute of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.
Green, Ron W
  • Institute of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand.

MeSH Terms

  • Animals
  • Female
  • Forelimb / diagnostic imaging
  • Hoof and Claw / physiology
  • Horses / physiology
  • Male
  • Posture
  • Toe Phalanges / diagnostic imaging

Citations

This article has been cited 4 times.
  1. Sharp Y, Tabor G. An Investigation into the Effects of Changing Dorso-Plantar Hoof Balance on Equine Hind Limb Posture.. Animals (Basel) 2022 Nov 24;12(23).
    doi: 10.3390/ani12233275pubmed: 36496795google scholar: lookup
  2. Peeters MWJ, Thursby JJ, Watson HE, Berner D. Caudal foot placement superior to toe elevation for navicular palmaroproximal-palmarodistal-oblique image quality.. Equine Vet J 2023 Jan;55(1):122-128.
    doi: 10.1111/evj.13563pubmed: 35092326google scholar: lookup
  3. Gu00fcndemir O, Szara T, Pazvant G, Erdikmen DO, Duro S, Perez W. Radiogrametric Analysis of the Thoracic Limb Phalanges in Arabian Horses and Thoroughbred Horses.. Animals (Basel) 2021 Jul 26;11(8).
    doi: 10.3390/ani11082205pubmed: 34438663google scholar: lookup
  4. Wright S. Highlights of recent clinically relevant papers.. Equine Vet Educ 2017 Apr;29(4):178-179.
    doi: 10.1111/eve.12743pubmed: 32313393google scholar: lookup