Cervical spine dynamic instability in patient with rheumatoid arthritis

Case contributed by Dr Andrew Dixon


Rheumatoid arthritis patient planning for intubation. ? cervical spine stability.

Patient Data

Age: 65
Gender: Female

C4-5 and C5-6 anterolistheses which reduce on extension and increase on flexion consistent with significant discoligamentous instability. No obvious median atlantoaxial joint instability demonstrated. 

Case Discussion

This case emphasizes the importance of assessing for cervical instability in rheumatoid arthritis patients prior to any planned intubation. This patient would have been at significant risk of cord injury if intubation was performed without this knowledge. 

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Case information

rID: 45107
Published: 15th May 2016
Last edited: 14th Aug 2019
System: Spine
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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