A horizontal line projecting over a cervical vertebral body on lateral radiographs can simulate a fracture or a butterfly vertebral body. This pseudofracture, the so-called cervical split, can result from the lucency between contiguous uncovertebral osteophytes, or, as in the case above, cervical scoliosis resulting in projection of the facet joint over the vertebral body.
A cervical split due to uncovertebral joint osteophyte formation is said to be always accompanied by disc space narrowing.
- Goldberg RP, Vine HS, Sacks BA, Ellison HP. The cervical split: a pseudofracture. Skeletal Radiol. 1982 Jan;7(4):267-72.
- Patinharayil G1, Han CW, Marthya A, Meethall KC, Surendran S, Rudrappa GH. Butterfly vertebra: an uncommon congenital spinal anomaly. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2008 Nov 15;33(24):E926-8.