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Free Content Hiding in Plain Sight: Paravertebral Masses and Mimics

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In the era of cross-sectional imaging, the diagnosis of neoplastic, infectious, and reactive paravertebral processes has become more straightforward. Nevertheless, because symptoms are nonspecific, initial detection may be based on chest or abdominal radiographs on which subtle changes can provide the first clues to an underlying abnormality. Through illustrative cases, we review the normal radiographic appearance and companion cases of paravertebral pathology on both radiographs and cross-sectional imaging to highlight subtle changes in regional skeletal and soft-tissue anatomy, which can provide the first clues to masses, traumatic injuries, and infectious and inflammatory processes.

Learning Objective: Because radiographs may be the presenting images of paraspinal processes, the radiologist must recognize subtle distortions of normal anatomy to best guide the next most appropriate imaging examination.
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Keywords: AP = anteroposterior; PA = posteroanterior

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 February 2018

More about this publication?
  • Neurographics is the peer-reviewed, bimonthly educational journal of the American Society of Neuroradiology. The journal comprises articles selected from material presented at the ASNR Annual Meeting. Neurographics also publishes other high-quality submissions that are primarily educational and have a high emphasis on a pictorial approach. Neurographics offers CME credit for reading review articles and completing quiz-based self-assessment activities. CME credit for review articles may be claimed up to 3 years after an article's publication date. Visit https://members.asnr.org/webcast/content/course_list.asp?src=Neurographics to view all available CME courses.
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