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3Anterior decompression

Thoracic and lumbar fractures: Anterior stabilization

If necessary, the spinal canal is decompressed by the resection of the posterior wall of the vertebral body.

The posterior cortex should be thinned with the burr to an eggshell. Retropulsed bone fragments can be removed with curettes and thin footplate Kerrison punches.

This is optimally done with a high speed burr and curettes under loupe or microscopic magnification.