Ping pong skull fracture

Ping pong skull fracture or pond skull fracture refers to a depressed skull fracture of the infant skull caused by inner buckling of the calvarium. It is seen in newborns because of the soft and resilient nature of their bones (like greenstick fractures of long bones) and the fracture line is not visualised radiologically.

A shallow trench is noted on the surface of the skull, and the periosteum and dura are intact. A shallow trench is noted on the surface of the skull, and the periosteum and dura are intact. Usually, it is not associated with significant neurological injury. 

It could occur both as a birth trauma or in postnatal blunt traumas. In the former, it usually results from the pressure caused by mother's pelvic bones against the soft skull during labour. Forceps used during delivery could also be a cause. 

May be seen a smooth inward indentation of the calvarium. A distinct fracture line is not seen.

It can be either treated conservatively or surgically depending on the severity of depression.

Spontaneous elevation have been described in ping pong fractures occurred after birth trauma, however, it is extremely rare when occurs in infants after head trauma 4.

The fracture is called a 'ping pong" fracture because it resembles a ping pong ball that has been indented inwards after being pushed in with a finger.

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Article Information

rID: 26777
Synonyms or Alternate Spellings:
  • Pond fracture
  • Ping pong fracture
  • Ping pong fracture of skull
  • Pond fracture of the skull
  • Pond fractures
  • Ping pong fractures
  • Neonatal depressed skull fracture
  • Neonatal depressed skull fractures
  • Ping pong fracture of the skull

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