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Fracture of #9 molar on both upper cheek sides?

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  • Fracture of #9 molar on both upper cheek sides?

    Last week the vet discovered that my 4 yo (literally turned 4 last week) had broken his #9 molar on both sides of his upper jaw, I have had him for about 10 months. The fracture runs from the tongue side to the cheek and is clean to the gum line. The fracture is significant enough that the angled flat headed tool she was using could be placed into the fracture site. The vet who worked on him was the younger one so I spoke with my primary vet (owns the practice) and he indicated x-rays would tell them more, but that he thought pulling the teeth would not cause an issue. However, as my gelding has just turned 4 the tooth root is significant so pulling the teeth seems like it might present some real risk. My biggest concern is the deep socket that will be left behind and how that will be protected from grain, hay, etc. being caught in the hole. My vet indicated it would not be an issue. As to how my boy did such a thing the doc thinks he likely bit down on something that in his mouth (similar to a bit), but as the #9 molar is quite far back, I can not imagine what type of object that would have been!

    I have never heard of or seen something like this, much less on both sides of the mouth in the upper jaw. Has anyone else seen this happen? If so, what was the outcome? Obviously, I am working with my vet to choose the best option for my young guy, but I thought I would ask if anyone has experience with this type of thing as I am perpetually curious and like to solve a good mystery.

    Thanks in advance for your help!

  • #2
    The extraction would be rough at that age but the hole would not be a problem. My understanding is the two molars on each side would come more together. What would be a problem is that you won't have opposing teeth lining up top to bottom and so you would have to float him more often.

    No idea how he broke it but they can do strange things. Friend's horse had a similarly weird fracture (in terms of direction) in a front tooth. They took xrays and determined they were able to drill and fill it and didn't have to extract or do root canal.

    Consult with someone that specializes in equine dentistry.. maybe you have some options if the tooth root isn't damaged/infected.


    • #3
      Hello! I currently work with an equine dentist I am not a dentist or a vet just the assistant. I will share about some of the extractions we have done. I would definitely get some x-ray since you mentioned its on the top and not the bottom. unfortunately the top is very close to the sinus area and you do not want it to become infected if he develops periodontal pockets around the broken teeth. 4 is young yes but the teeth are still growing in but its still not going to be easy. 7-9 is when the extractions CAN be the most difficult because thats when the root of the molar is the longest. Also sometimes extractions can take 30 minutes and sometimes it takes hours. you mentioned your biggest concern is the empty hole after. Your dentist/vet should pack it with gauze and should after rinsing it thoroughly with antisceptic(usually clorhexodine water) then they should be able to come by and change the packing every few days including usually he day after the original extraction. they should also be checking that its healing and might give you some "mouthwash" to put into a large oral syringe to flush his mouth with 2x a day(ish). you vet might also give you some antibiotics for a few days.