Many vertebral levels are associated with key anatomical landmarks. Below is a summary of vertebral levels and associated internal or surface anatomy. Please note that some texts differ slightly on certain levels and levels may be altered by patient positioning (supine versus erect) and patient ...
Vertebral metastases represent the secondary involvement of the vertebral spine by hematogenously-disseminated metastatic cells. They must be included in any differential diagnosis of a spinal bone lesion in a patient older than 40 years.
This article will focus only on the metastasis involving...
Vertebral pneumatocysts are gas-filled cavities within the spinal vertebrae. They are most common at cervical levels. In general, vertebral pneumatocysts are less common than intraosseous pneumatocysts in the pelvis, especially adjacent to the sacroiliac joint.
Although not comple...
Vertebral scalloping is a concavity to the posterior (or less commonly anterior) aspect of the vertebral body when viewed in a lateral projection. A small amount of concavity is normal, as is concavity of the anterior vertebral body (see vertebral body squaring).
Vertebral vascular foramina, also known as Hahn canal or cleft, are normal findings seen on cross-sectional imaging and should not be mistaken for a fracture, especially in the setting of trauma. They transmit:
basivertebral veins (forms Hahn's canal): foramen is seen on the posterior surface o...
The vertebral venous plexus is a highly anastomotic network of valveless veins running along the entire length of the vertebral column from the foramen magnum to the sacral hiatus.
The vertebral venous plexus is comprised of three interconnected divisions:
internal vertebral ven...
Vertebra plana (plural: vertebrae planae), also known as the pancake, silver dollar or coin-on-edge vertebra, is the term given when a vertebral body has lost almost its entire height anteriorly and posteriorly, representing a very advanced compression fracture.
It can occur in a var...
Mnemonics to remember the causes of vertebra plana include:
E: eosinophilic granuloma
F: fracture (trauma)
E: eosinophilic granuloma
T: tumor (e.g. metastases, myelom...
Vertebroplasty is an imaging-guided procedure which entails percutaneous injection of surgical polymethylmethacrylate (PMMA) cement into a diseased vertebral body. Vertebroplasty provides pain relief and strengthening of the bone of vertebrae weakened by disease.
It can be used as ...
Vertical expandable prosthetic titanium rib (VEPTR) procedure is a surgical technique that was initially developed to treat thoracic insufficiency syndrome and then it was used in congenital scoliosis with rib abnormalities, and has since been successfully used to treat early-onset scoliosis wit...
Signs inspired by the letter V have been described in several different pathologies:
inverted V sign (pneumoperitoneum)
inverted V sign (spinal cord)
Naclerio V sign (pneumomediastinum)
Whiplash syndrome, also known as whiplash-associated disorders (WAD), are the various symptoms caused by rapid acceleration and/or deceleration injuries, which result in cervical sprain or strain.
Whiplash is a common injury, usually associated with motor vehicle collisions 1-5. T...
White cord syndrome refers to the sudden onset of neurological deterioration following spinal decompressive surgery. The condition is believed to be a form of reperfusion injury of the spinal cord, not to be confused with central cord syndrome.
White cord syndrome is rare with onl...
The white matter is the substance of the brain and spinal cord that contains the fiber tracts of neuronal axons in the central nervous system. The term is due to the paler color of the lipid-rich myelin that encases the axons in the tracts compared to the grey matter, which contains predominantl...
The spinal cord has numerous tracts of white matter that ascend and descend in the peripheral substance of the cord. They can be divided by their location and function:
anterior corticospinal tract
medial longitudinal fasiculus
The WHO classification of CNS tumors is the most widely accepted system for classifying CNS tumors, now into its 5th edition, traditionally published in a blue cover (thus "blue book").
Although traditionally based on histological characteristics of the tumors, since the 2016 revised 4th editio...
The interpedicular distance, which is the distance measured between the pedicles on frontal/coronal imaging, can be widened in a number of situations.
conditions that can cause dural ectasia (can potentially cause widening)
Spondylolisthesis can be classified according to broad etiologies as described by Wiltse in 1981 1. Typically when reporting studies with spondylolisthesis the Wiltse type is merely stated without referring to its number, whereas the grade of spondylolisthesis is explicitly stated: e.g. "Grade 1...
The (absent) pedicle sign, also called the winking owl sign, occurs on plain radiograph of the spine when a pedicle is absent 5.
The term, winking owl sign, where the missing pedicle corresponds to the closed eye, the contralateral pedicle to the other round open eye, and the spinous process to...
The Y sign refers to a common appearance in lumbar epidural lipomatosis where excess fat in the extradural space compresses the dural sac into the shape of the letter "Y".
NB: Y sign also refers to the appearance of incudomalleolar disarticulation on CT, more commonly known to radiologists as t...