To evaluate and quantify the kinematic behavior of canine mandibles before and after bilateral rostral or unilateral segmental mandibulectomy as well as after mandibular reconstruction with a locking reconstruction plate in ex vivo conditions.
Head specimens from cadavers of 16 dogs (range in body weight, 30 to 35 kg).
Specimens were assigned to undergo unilateral segmental (n = 8) or bilateral rostral (8) mandibulectomy and then mandibular reconstruction by internal fixation with locking plates. Kinematic markers were attached to each specimen in a custom-built load frame. Markers were tracked in 3-D space during standardized loading conditions, and mandibular motions were quantified. Differences in mandibular range of motion among 3 experimental conditions (before mandibulectomy [ie, with mandibles intact], after mandibulectomy, and after reconstruction) were assessed by means of repeated-measures ANOVA.
Both unilateral segmental and bilateral rostral mandibulectomy resulted in significantly greater mandibular motion and instability, compared with results for intact mandibles. No significant differences in motion were detected between mandibles reconstructed after unilateral segmental mandibulectomy and intact mandibles. Similarly, the motion of mandibles reconstructed after rostral mandibulectomy was no different from that of intact mandibles, except in the lateral direction.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Mandibular kinematics in head specimens from canine cadavers were significantly altered after unilateral segmental and bilateral rostral mandibulectomy. These alterations were corrected after mandibular reconstruction with locking reconstruction plates. Findings reinforced the clinical observations of the beneficial effect of reconstruction on mandibular function and the need for reconstructive surgery after mandibulectomy in dogs.