Delayed presentation of a thoracic aortic injury with a vertebral pedicle screw

Ann Vasc Surg. 2013 May;27(4):499.e1-3. doi: 10.1016/j.avsg.2012.07.025. Epub 2013 Mar 29.


Iatrogenic aortic injuries by pedicle screws are rare but serious complications of spinal fixation surgery. We report the case of a 55-year-old man who underwent surgical correction of traumatic thoracic vertebral fractures at another institution. At 6-month follow-up, computed tomography revealed a nonhealing of the fractures, and a T4 misplaced pedicle screw penetrating the descending thoracic aorta. The patient underwent open aortic repair associated with the anterior vertebral column reconstruction and posterior arthrodesis revision by a vascular and orthopedic surgery team simultaneously.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Angiography
  • Aorta, Thoracic / diagnostic imaging
  • Aorta, Thoracic / injuries*
  • Aortic Diseases / diagnostic imaging
  • Aortic Diseases / etiology*
  • Aortic Diseases / surgery
  • Bone Screws / adverse effects*
  • Delayed Diagnosis
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Fracture Fixation, Internal / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Postoperative Complications*
  • Rib Fractures / diagnostic imaging
  • Rib Fractures / surgery*
  • Thoracic Vertebrae / surgery*
  • Time Factors
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Vascular Surgical Procedures / methods