Rugger-jersey spine

Case contributed by Dr Bruno Di Muzio


HIV positive patient with lymphoma.

Patient Data

Age: 36
Gender: Male

Abdomen X-ray

Signals of hepatosplenomegaly. Vertebral bodies shows bandlike regions of increased opacity at its superior and inferior margins. 


CT Abdomen and pelvis (selected images)

The CT study shows sclerotic bands on the inferior and superior endplates of vertebral bodies (alternating dense-lucent-dense appearance) that represents accumulations of excess osteoid. It affects all vertebral bodies.

Case Discussion

Rugger jersey spine describes the prominent sub-endplate densities at multiple contiguous levels to produce an alternating dense-lucent-dense appearance. This simulates the transverse bands of rugby sweater.

The patient had a normal renal function at the moment of the exam. Unfortunately, there were no further clinical information about a possible hyperparathyroidism.

Although this vertebral sign is relatively specific for hyperparathyroidism, a similar appearance may be seen in Paget disease and osteopetrosis.

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Case information

rID: 20319
Published: 19th Jan 2015
Last edited: 9th Sep 2015
Tag: spine
Inclusion in quiz mode: Included

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