Hyperflexion injury with a clay-shoveler fracture

CT depicts an avulsion fracture of the spinous process of C6. MR reveals additional important findings, including the extensive posterior paraspinal muscular injury (edema), disruption of the interspinous ligament, compression fractures (marrow edema) involving multiple contiguous cervical and thoracic vertebral bodies, and extensive prevertebral edema as well as fluid (hemorrhage). Note that the cord appears uninjured, without the presence of cord edema or hemorrhage. (Case provided courtesy of Reto Sutter, MD, Leitender Arzt, Radiologie, Uniklinik Balgrist, Zürich)

Hyperextension injury with a clay-shoveler fracture 751890 revised
Part of the on-line supplement to Neuroradiology – The Essentials with MR and CT (© 2015)