Treatment of caudal mandibular fracture and temporomandibular joint fracture-luxation using a bi-gnathic encircling and retaining device

I. Nicholson*, J. Wyatt, H. Radke, S. J. Langley-Hobbs

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

    22 Citations (Scopus)


    Fractures of the caudal portion of the mandible and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) fracture-luxation can be challenging to treat with direct fixation methods. This paper describes a simple technique for the indirect treatment of caudal mandibular fracture and TMJ fracture-luxation using a subcutaneous loop of nylon leader line tunnelled around the maxilla, incisive and nasal bones, and under the mandible, placed just caudal to the canine teeth, and crimped ventral to the mandibular skin: a bignathic encircling and retaining device (BEARD). A BEARD was used to treat two immature dogs with simple, unilateral caudal mandibular fractures, six cats with unilateral injury (two with TMJ luxation, three with TMJ fracture-luxation, one with caudal mandibular fracture), and two cats with bilateral injury (comminuted caudal mandibular fracture with contralateral TMJ luxation; bilateral condylar neck fracture). The BEARD treatment failed short-term due to poor tolerance in one cat, and concurrent injuries and poor initial reduction in another cat. One cat was lost to long-term follow-up. Rostral dental occlusion was normal in six out of seven cases, and reported jaw function was normal in seven out of seven cases. The case with poor occlusion had imperfect initial reduction. Complications included dorsal nasal skin swelling or discharge, oesophagostomy tube dislodgement or blockage, BEARD loosening, and regurgitation. Treatment of uni- or bilateral caudal mandibular trauma using a BEARD can lead to clinical union, and normal rostral occlusion, provided that case selection is appropriate and immediate-post-surgical occlusion has been corrected.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)102-108
    Number of pages7
    JournalVeterinary and Comparative Orthopaedics and Traumatology
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 2010


    • Mandible
    • temporomandibular joint
    • fracture
    • luxation
    • CATS
    • DOGS
    • REPAIR
    • TUBES

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