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Chir Organi Mov. 2000 Apr-Jun;85(2):129-35.

The results of the surgical and conservative treatment of non-neurologic comminuted thoracolumbar fractures.

[Article in English, Italian]

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II Cattedra Clinica Ortopedica e Traumatologica, Università di Roma La Sapienza.


A retrospective radiologic study of 40 non-neurologic thoracolumbar fractures allowed for the evaluation of the long-term results of surgical and conservative treatment in terms of correction of the post-traumatic deformity. The Magerl classification and the McCormack scale were used to select compressive type fractures (type A), and fractures characterized by comminution of the vertebral body without involvement of the posterior elements. Instability related to comminution and to considerable diastasis of the fragments is at the basis of failure of conservative (plaster brace) and surgical (short posterior fixation and posterolateral fusion) treatments. Severe type A fractures treated conservatively have, in fact, at follow-up shown significant residual deformity, while failure of the instrumentation or loss of correction in 40% of cases treated surgically has been revealed.

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