Three column thoracic spine fracture

Case contributed by Dr Henry Knipe


High speed MVA.

Patient Data

Age: 25 years
Gender: Male

Fracture through the T5 vertebral body anterior and posterior cortices with 50% loss of height. Fracture line extends posteriorly through the pedicle on the right through to both laminae. Anterosuperior T6 vertebral body fracture. 

Case Discussion

This fracture should be considered unstable as it involves all three columns. They can be associated with further complications including epidural haemoatoma and spinal cord injury, and can be seen in conjunction with sternal fractures, traumatic aortic injuries, mediastinal haemtoma and cardiac contusion due to the mechanism of hyperflexion and anteroposterior compression. 

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Case information

rID: 51804
Published: 17th Mar 2017
Last edited: 14th Aug 2019
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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