Animal Dentistry and Oral Surgery Specialists, LLC

2409 Omro Road
Oshkosh, WI 54904-7713


Mandibular Symphysis of the Rabbit


The mandibular symphysis for the rabbit is of critical importance.  The mandibular symphysis provides stability of all four dental arches.  This stability is essential for effective occlusion and the necessary dental attrition.  A fractured or separated mandibular symphysis can result in severe malocclusion, anorexia, starvation and death.


Anatomy of the mandibular symphysis

The symphysis of the adult rabbit does not have a bony fusion of the left and right mandibles as occurs in apes, humans and monkeys.  The mandibles of the adult rabbit join together by a synchondrosis in the anterior part, and by a suture like fusion of connective tissues in the posterior part.  The mandibular symphysis functions to firmly secure the two mandibles and allows for synchronous lateral jaw movements observed during mastication.


Injury to the mandibular syphysis requires immediate treatment

Management of clinical patients that suffer complete disruption of the mandibular symphysis, must be treated immediately.  The correct anatomic relationships must be created.  If the mandibular incisor teeth are intact; composite bonding of the teeth is an optimal strategy for repair.  If the symphyseal separation results in minor instability; placement of non-absorbable suture material may be an effective repair method.