Sunday, August 21, 2011

Ivory Vertebra

An ivory vertebra is a vertebral body with normal size and contour and normal adjacent discs that has increased density on radiographs.

The main differential considerations include:
  • Osteoblastic tumor: In children, consider osteosarcoma, metastatic neuroblastoma and medulloblastoma, and osteoblastoma. In adults consider metastatic breast or prostate cancer.
  • Lymphoma: Usually Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Paget disease: Usually causes expansion of the vertebral body, in which case it doesn't exactly fit the definition.
  • Idiopathic segmental sclerosis: Reactive bone formation in response to stress.


Graham TS. The ivory vertebra sign. Radiology. 2005 May;235(2):614-5

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