Carpus

The carpal joint (the “knee) rests between the radius and cannon (third metacarpal) bone. Lameness associated with the carpal joint can include problems within the joint, the surrounding bones, and the tendons and ligaments that pass over. Symptoms of carpal joint disease vary from mild lameness to declining athletic performance to severe lameness. Physical examination findings may show swelling and heat surrounding the carpal joint spaces, pain on manipulation, and decreased range of motion. The strong carpal joint withstands tremendous amounts of pressure and, over time (particularly in race horses) these repetitive forces can lead to osteoarthritis. Other carpal joint abnormalities include: osteochondral fragments, fractures to the carpal bones, and soft tissue inflammation (e.g.: intercarpal ligament tears, suspensory desmitis).

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