Chapter

Thoracolumbar, lumbar, and sacral fractures

Philip Sell

in Oxford Textbook of Trauma and Orthopaedics

Second edition

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199550647
Published online April 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199608249 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/med/9780199550647.003.012043

Series: Oxford Textbooks

Thoracolumbar, lumbar, and sacral fractures

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High-energy trauma often results in serious spinal fractures. The junctional zone between the relatively stiff thoracic spine and the more mobile lumbar spine is particularly susceptible to injury

The role of decompression in spinal cord injury remains uncertain at level three or four evidence

Unstable fractures may be stabilized using modern fracture fixation methods enabling easier nursing care in polytrauma and earlier mobilization than non-surgical treatment

There is level two evidence that stable thoracolumbar fractures have similar outcomes with surgical and non-surgical treatment

There are many fracture classification systems that are not validated or have poor inter- and intraobserver error. Recent modern validated systems may in the future assist in the rational planning of interventions for spinal injury.

Chapter.  3112 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Trauma and Orthopaedic Surgery ; Surgical Skills

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