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Joseph Junewick, MD FACR
over 8 years ago
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Jefferson Fracture

Case Detail

Anatomy: Brain-Spine
Joseph Junewick, MD FACR
Diagnostic Category: Trauma
Created: over 8 years ago
Updated: over 8 years ago
Modality/Study Types: CT
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10 year old male who fell from trampoline. No loss of consciousness. No neurological deficit.

Case Images


Jefferson Fracture


CT – 1) Fractures of the anterior arch of C1 near the right and left synchondroses; the left sided fracture extends to the lateral mass and the right sided fracture is mildly diastatic and rotated anteriorly 2) nondisplaced fracture of the posterior arch of C1 on the right. Not shown is a nondisplaced fracture of the left lateral mass of C2.


Jefferson bursting fracture is the result of axial loading; a force applied to the skull vertex is transmitted vertically through the occipital condyles to the lateral masses of C1 and disruption of the anterior and posterior arches. The fracture fragments are usually displaced centrifugally. Jefferson fracture is unusual in children, especially infants and young children where the synchondroses are unfused.


Harris JH and Mirvis SE. The Radiology of Acute Cervical Spine Trauma, 3rd Ed (1996).

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