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Talar fracture and lipohemarthrosis

Case Detail

Anatomy: Musculoskeletal
Heather Borders, MD
Diagnostic Category: Trauma
Created: over 9 years ago
Updated: over 9 years ago
Tags: PEDS
Modality/Study Types: CT
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Teenage male jumped out of a tree. Evaluate for fracture.

Case Images


Lipohemarthrosis of the subtalar joint with talar fracture.


Axial CT with soft tissue windows demonstrates a lipohemarthrosis of the subtalar joint. Axial CT with bone windows demonstrates a subtle non displaced fracture of the lateral talar process.


Lipohemarthrosis is the mixture of fat and blood in a joint cavity following trauma. Specifically, intraarticular fractures can lead to migration of fat and blood from the marrow cavity into the joint space. Due to the fact that fat is less dense than blood, a fat-blood interface forms and can be seen on radiography or CT as a fat-fluid level.

Lipohemarthrosis is very specific for an intra articular fracture. The only way for marrow fat to leak into a joint is by fracture.


Hemarthrosis and lipohemarthrosis. Statdx. James F. Griffith, MBBCh, FRCR

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