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Hangman’s Fracture

  1. It occurs when a fracture line passes through the neural arch of axis (C2) vertebrae (or rarely into vertebral body)
  2. It is sometimes known as the injury between cervico cranium and the rest of cervical spine. Because of its association with judicial execution it is also known as hangman’s fracture,.
Description: hngm1
  1. The mechanism of injury in true, judicial hangman’s fracture is extension with distraction; where as in civilian injuries (motor vehicle accidents) C2 fractures are caused by hyper extension, axial compression and flexion (now more common and relatively have low incidence of neurological involvement than true type).
  2. Hangman’s fracture are 2nd most common type of axis (C-2) fracture, only preceeded by odontoid fractures.
  3. It is 2nd only to occipito atlantal dislocations in cervical injuries leading to fatalities.
  4. Because of the high ratio of spinal canal size to spinal cord size at this level, neurological damage associated with hangman’s fracture should be unusual (3- 10%).
  5. Union always occurs in Hangman’s fracture.

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