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Spine Case 14 Background

A Jefferson fracture is a burst fracture of the atlas involving bilateral anterior and posterior arches. It is due to a significant axial load, driving the occipital condyles into the lateral masses of C1. It is named after the British neurologist and neurosurgeon Sir Geoffrey Jefferson, who reported four cases of the fracture in 1920. Jefferson fractures account for 2-13% of injuries to the cervical spine. They are often associated with other C spine injuries, head injury, and vertebral artery injury.