Last Updated on March 8, 2022 by Allison Price
Equine Odontoclastic Tooth Removal and Hypercementosis are painful and progressive equine dental conditions. This condition is more common in horses over 15 years old. Initial EOTRH symptoms include resporption or loss of bone and tissue around the roots of horse’s incisors, front teeth, and canine teeth. These teeth can be brittle and susceptible to breaking. This condition can also be characterized by the growth of cementum, which is a type dental tissue. It causes a bulbous swelling of the tooth roots. The cause of the condition is currently unknown.
How does EOTRH get diagnosed?
Often, EOTRH symptoms are subtle and result from incisor discomfort. Horse owners may notice a shift in horse behavior, such as increased headshaking or bridling. Some horse owners may notice their horse licking the hay, or difficulty eating hard treats like carrots and apples. EOTRH can sometimes also be responsible for weight loss or resistance to having your mouth and teeth examined.
A veterinarian might suspect EOTRH if he or she observes red pimple-like lesion (gums) on the gingiva (gums), and/or a bulbous appearance in this area.
Radiographs of the canine and incisor teeth are required to confirm EOTRH. These images can be used to diagnose the condition, determine the stage of the disease and help guide treatment.
How is EOTRH handled?
In order to relieve pain from EOTRH, the best treatment is to have your teeth removed surgically. The procedure is usually performed in a standing, sedated horse. Local anesthesia is used to ensure that the horse is comfortable throughout the procedure. After a short recovery, these horses are able to return to normal grazing and riding after a few days. Many horses will gain weight after the painful teeth are removed.