Chance fracture

Case contributed by Dr Andrew Dixon


Trampoline accident

Patient Data

Age: 18 years
Gender: Female

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On the AP film the posterior elements of T12 are poorly seen and the distance between the T11 and T12 spinous processes appears markedly increased. Lateral film confirms kyphotic wedge of the T12 vertebral body with horizontal fracture through the posterior elements with interspinous widening. 


CT confirms chance fracture of T12. 


Chance fracture of T12 with complete tear of the T11-12 ligamentum flavuum and supraspinus ligament, 

Case Discussion

Typical plain radiographic, CT and MRI appearance of a vertebral chance fracture. It is worth noting that these can be associated with retroperitoneal injuries (pancreatic and duodenal injury).  

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