The Hip: Preservation, Replacement and Revision

Thoracic Spine


- See: Thoracolumbar fractures:

- Frx Discussion:
    - frx in this region are usually the result of hyperflexion, which produces wedge compression of one or more vertebral bodies;
    - due to the rigidity of the rib cage, most of these fractures are stable; (See Burst Fx)
    - where kyphosis > 30 deg, internal stabilization probably will be required to prevent further deformity;
    - thoracic spinal canal is narrow in relation to spinal cord, so that thoracic spinal cord injuries commonly are complete;
- Anatomy:
    - thoracic vertebrae have two costal facets on each side, one along upper & other along lower edge at the junction of the body w/ arch;
    - each facet is in reality demifacet that, together w/ demifacet of adajcent vertebra, forms a cup-shaped depression for articulation with the 
         head of a rib;
    - spinous processes of T2 to T12 are long & slope sharply downward;
    - laminae are broad and sloping and overlap like shingles of roof;
    - transverse processes extend posteriorly as well as laterally, and each ends in a clubbed extremity whose anterior surface has small facet
          for articulation with the tubercle of the corresponding rib;
    - articular processes are thin, more or less triangular, and have flat articular surfaces somewhat oriented in a frontal plane;
    - superior articular facets face backward, upward, and medially;
    - inferior articular facets face forward and laterally;
    - movement most obviously permitted is lateral flexion (abduction and adduction)


Placement of pedicle screws in the thoracic spine. Part II: An anatomical and radiographic assessment.

Placement of pedicle screws in the thoracic spine. Part I: Morphometric analysis of the thoracic vertebrae.



Original Text by Clifford R. Wheeless, III, MD.

Last updated by Data Trace Staff on Thursday, April 12, 2012 9:45 am