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Traumatic lateral expulsion of the L-4 vertebral body from the spinal column

Traumatic lateral spondyloptosis is mostly a lateral shearing injury that must be tremendous enough to completely disrupt the strong musculoligamentous and bony structures. This injury has only been described at single levels in the lumbar spine. Lateral expulsion of a vertebral body from the spinal column due to 2-level adjacent spondyloptosis has not been previously reported. This 16-year-old girl was referred to our center for the management of an extremely unusual L2-5 fracture-dislocation. Motor deficits were incomplete and sacral sensation was spared. Three-dimensional reconstructed CT scans revealed a fracture involving the superior L-4 vertebral body and endplate. There was also complete disruption of the L4-5 disc space. The majority of the L-4 vertebral body was expelled to the right of the spinal column, with the collapse of L-3 and a small remnant of the L-4 superior endplate onto L-5. Surgical management involved decompression, reduction, reconstruction of L-4 with a cage, and L1-ilium stabilization and fusion. Only a few attachments of the psoas muscles had to be divided to roll the L-4 vertebral body out posterolaterally, similar to the method of complete en bloc spondylectomy used in oncology. Neurological recovery has thus far included the resumption of normal bladder and bowel function, as well as ambulation with the use of a right leg brace. Perhaps this type of fracture has not been previously described because many patients would be expected to succumb to vascular or visceral injury. The authors believe this is the first case report of double lateral spondyloptosis at adjacent levels, resulting in expulsion of the vertebral body from the spinal column

Keywords : Adolescent,Decompression,Surgical,diagnostic imaging,Female,Humans,injuries,Leg,Lumbar Vertebrae,Patients,Psoas Muscles,Radiography,Sensation,Spinal Fractures,Spinal Fusion,Spine,surgery,Treatment Outcome,Universities,, Lateral,Expulsion,L4, biopsychosocial model of pain

Date of Publication : 2011 Apr

Authors : Wilkinson JS;Riesberry MA;Mann SA;Fourney DR;

Organisation : College of Medicine, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada

Journal of Publication : J Neurosurg Spine

Pubmed Link :

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