Acute and chronic vertebral body fractures

Case contributed by Dr Andrew Dixon


Fall. Back pain.

Patient Data

Age: 85 years
Gender: Female

Lumbar Spine CT


Subtle acute fracture through the inferior portion of the T11 vertebral body with clear cortical buckling seen anteriorly. Old fractures of the T12 and L1 inferior vertebral endplates. An acute on the chronic component to the T12 fracture is difficult to exclude. Degenerative anterolisthesis of L4 on L5 is seen. 

Case Discussion

This case demonstrates the differences between acute and chronic vertebral body compression fractures on CT, emphasizing the cortical buckling and subtle trabecular impaction seen with acute fractures. 

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