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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 12(3); 2001 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 2001;12(3): 345-347.
Butterfly Vertebra: A Case Report
Seok Ran Yeom, Gun Lee, Cheol Wan Park, Hyuk Jun Yang, Sung Youl Hyun, Eell Ryoo, Wook Jin
1Department of Emergency Medicine, Emergency Medical Center, Gachon Medical College, Incheon, Korea. er@ghil.com
2Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Emergency Medical Center, Gachon Medical College, Incheon, Korea.
ABSTRACT
A butterfly vertebra is a rare, but very important congenital anomaly that must be differentially diagnosed with compression fracture of the vertebral body. It has characteristic findings on simple X-ray, CT, and MRI. These findings are an anterior wedging contour on the sagittal image, a widening of the transverse diameter on the coronal image, adaptations of nearby vertebral endplates on the sagittal image, communicated intervertebral disc spaces on the sagittal and the coronal images, a well-defined midline bony defect with a sclerotic margin in the vertebral body on the axial image, and a normal body signal intensity on MRI. Because of legal problems and further plans for treatment, close attention must be given to patients who complain of back pain and who have decreased anterior height of the vertebral body after trauma. In those patients, a butterfly vertebra must be differentially diagnosed with compression fracture of vertebral body. We report one such case here.
Key words: Spine, Abnormalities, CT, MRI
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