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Three dimensional structure of the distal condyles of the third metacarpal bone of the horse.

Boyde, A; Haroon, Y; Jones, SJ; Riggs, CM; (1999) Three dimensional structure of the distal condyles of the third metacarpal bone of the horse. Equine Vet J , 31 (2) 122 - 129.

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Abstract

This study examined the three-dimensional (3D) microarchitecture of regions of the equine third metacarpal bone (McIII) commonly involved in distal condylar fractures. Limbs were obtained from Thoroughbred horses (neonates to age 24 years) destroyed for inoperable fractures and a variety of other conditions. Beams, blocks and sections were cut in the principal axes, some embedded in PMMA and others examined unembedded. Several methods were used to study the 3D structure, including conventional and confocal optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and radiography. The mineralised articular cartilage tends to cleave in the sagittal plane. Proximal to the subchondral bone, the main trabeculae are robust plates running in the sagittal direction with less significant mediolateral connections. Small blood vessel canals lie inside the sagittal plates. This structure gives maximum strength and protection in the sagittal plane in which the bone rotates, but offers minimal resistance to fracture propagation in this plane. The anatomical course of the common distal condylar fractures of the third metacarpal bones can be explained by underlying anisotropic structural features of the mineralised tissues.

Type: Article
Title: Three dimensional structure of the distal condyles of the third metacarpal bone of the horse.
Location: ENGLAND
Language: English
Keywords: Animals, Cartilage, Articular, Horses, Metacarpus, Microscopy, Confocal, Microscopy, Electron, Scanning
UCL classification: UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Biosciences (Division of)
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/22217
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