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Chang Hwa Ham 1 Article
Management of a traumatic avulsion fracture of the occipital condyle in polytrauma patient in Korea: a case report
Chang Hwa Ham, Woo-Keun Kwon, Joo Han Kim, Youn-Kwan Park, Jong Hyun Kim
J Trauma Inj. 2023;36(2):147-151.   Published online December 8, 2022
DOI: https://doi.org/10.20408/jti.2022.0058
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AbstractAbstract PDF
Avulsion fracture of the occipital condyle are rare lesion at craniovertebral junction. It is often related to high-energy traumatic injuries and show diverse clinical presentations. Neurologic deficit and instabilities may justify surgical treatment. However, the integrity of neurovascular structures is undervalued in the current literatures. In this case report, we described a 26-year-old female patient with avulsion fracture of occipital condyle following a traffic accident. On initial presentation, her Glasgow Coma Scale was 8. She presented with fracture compound comminuted depressed, on the left side of her forehead with skull base fracture extending into clivus and occipital condyle. Her left occipital condyle showed avulsion injury with displacement deep into the skull base. On her computed tomography angiography, the displaced occipital condyle compressed on the sigmoid sinus resulting in its obstruction. While she was recovering her consciousness during her stay in the hospital, the lower cranial nerves showed dysfunctions corresponding to Collet-Sicard syndrome. Due to high risk of vascular injury, the patient was conservatively treated for the occipital condyle fracture. On the 4 months postdischarge follow-up, her cranial nerve symptoms practically recovered, and the occipital condyle showed signs of fusion without further displacement. Current literatures focus on neurologic deficit and stability for the surgical decisions. However, it is also important to evaluate the neurovascular integrity to assess the risk of its manipulation as it may result in fatal outcome. This case shows, an unstable avulsion occipital condyle fracture with neurologic deficit can be treated conservatively and show a favorable outcome.
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J Trauma Inj : Journal of Trauma and Injury