Dental disease in alpacas. Part 2: Risk factors associated with diastemata, periodontitis, occlusal pulp exposure, wear abnormalities, and malpositioned teeth

Kirsten Proost, Bart Pardon, Elke Pollaris, Thijs Flahou, Lieven Vlaminck
2020 Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine  
Dental disorders, of which tooth root abscesses are best documented, are highly prevalent in alpacas. Identification of risk factors can be valuable for prevention of dental disorders in this species. To identify risk factors associated with wear abnormalities, malpositioning, diastemata, periodontal disease (PD), and occlusal pulp exposure at the level of the cheek teeth. Two hundred twenty-eight alpacas (Vicugna pacos) from 25 farms. Cross-sectional study. Dental examinations were performed
more » ... ns were performed on sedated animals. Risk factors were determined by clinical examination and interview. Multivariable logistic regression was used to identify risk factors for wear abnormalities, malpositioned teeth, diastemata, PD, and occlusal pulp exposure. Mandibular swelling was significantly associated with PD (odds ratio [OR], 11.37; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.27-48.81; P < .001). Nearly 73% of included animals with mandibular swelling concurrently had PD. For every increase in herd size of 1 animal, the risk for PD increased by 2% (95% CI, 1-4%; P = .01). The association between severe stages of PD and body condition score (BCS) indicates a painful situation, impairing animal welfare (P < .001). For each 1-day increase in interval between pasture cleanings, the odds of finding pulp exposure for a single animal was estimated to increase by 1% (95% CI, 0-2%; P = .05). Simple management tools such as measuring BCS, palpating the mandible for bony swellings, removing feces from pasture on a regular basis and decreasing herd size might help identify animals at risk for dental disorders or prevent their development.
doi:10.1111/jvim.15740 pmid:32108969 fatcat:5ye6ephrerhktfbnsqy6rqkf3u