Equine-Orthopédique : A case of P3 fracture in a horse

Warmblood mare, 7 years
9 months pregnancy
Intermittent lameness LF since 5 months on hard surface

Clinical exam:
- Lameness LF on straight line on hard surface, 2/5
- Circle, lameness RF 1/5 and LF 2/5
- No perineural anesthesia realized

Radiography of both feet. What do you think of the radiographs? Can you reach a diagnosis? Would you ask a complementary view and which one?
A radiolucent, thin, irregular, and oblique line is seen at the palmar border of the lateral palmar process of P3, interrupting both free edges. This line is isolating a palmar bony fragment of 1,5x0,7 cm. On the lateral projection, this line is seen like a curvilinear interruption, with ill bordered edges on the extremity of the palmar process.
The mare shows a long toe, low heels conformation.

To confirm the fracture, an oblique projection of the lateral palmar process is necessary. A dorso 55° proximo 45° lateral to palmarodistal oblqie view is taken.The line is cleary visible and confirms a type 1 fracture of P3.
The age of the fracture cannot be determined, because they heal by fibrocartilaginous union which stays radiolucent.
Type 1 fracture are relatively common and cause a mild lameness if any. They can be asymptomatic and bilateral. To confirm the cause of the lameness, a unilateral perineural anesthesia can be realized.