Volume 48, Issue 4 (July 2003)
Coronal Cleft Vertebra Initially Suspected as an Abusive Fracture in an Infant
A case of a four-month-old male infant is described who was found unresponsive at home and brought to the emergency room. He lived for four days. During his hospital admission he was diagnosed by radiography with a fracture of the third lumbar vertebra that was presumed abusive in nature.
Autopsy examination failed to confirm a fracture. However, a defect in the development of the vertebral bodies was discovered. He was diagnosed with possible failure of the notochord to regress, a condition with no significant sequelae. The cause of death was certified as sudden infant death syndrome after full investigation, and all autopsy studies were negative.