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Abnormal hyoid conformation in French Bulldogs: Case report and computed tomographic anatomical comparison

Bruyn, B.W. and Hosgood, G. (2021) Abnormal hyoid conformation in French Bulldogs: Case report and computed tomographic anatomical comparison. Australian Veterinary Journal . Early View.

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Brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS) is common in brachycephalic breeds and comprises multiple anatomic characteristics. Computed tomography (CT) is increasingly used in the preoperative assessment of dogs presenting with BOAS. We describe the case of a French Bulldog with a presumed congenital hyoid malformation and anatomic comparison of hyoid morphology between French Bulldogs and mesaticephalic dogs using CT.


Skull CT studies of French Bulldogs and mesaticephalic dogs presenting to two referral hospitals between 2013 and 2020 were collected. The degree of curvature of the basihyoid bone and the relative ventrodorsal thickness (RVD) were determined using a novel measurement technique. A circle of best fit was applied to the inside arc of the basihyoid bone, and the radius and sector angle within the basihyoid bone were recorded. The RVD was defined by the ventrodorsal thickness divided by the width in the frontal plane.


The basihyoid bone of French Bulldogs had a greater mean ± SD RVD of 0.23 ± 0.04 compared to 0.16 ± 0.03 in mesaticephalic dogs (P < 0.01). The sector angle was also greater in French Bulldogs, measuring 144.08 ± 20.88° compared to 103.94 ± 16.49° in mesaticephalic dogs (P < 0.01).


This case of hyoid malformation in a French Bulldog reports a rarely documented condition that complicated the management of BOAS. Comparative assessment of hyoid conformation revealed more acute curvature and greater RVD in French Bulldogs than in mesaticephalic dogs. This may represent an additional distorted anatomic component of brachycephalic skull morphology.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Veterinary Medicine
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Copyright: © 2021 Australian Veterinary Association
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