This page is dedicated to covering the important radiological finding of a spine sign.
WHAT IS IT?
A spine sign refers to a finding on a lateral chest X-ray where the vertebral bodies appear more dense progressively as you travel from the patient’s spine anteriorly towards the diaphragm. Normally the vertebrae on the lateral projection should become more lucent (darker) as they approach the diaphragm.
DIFFERENTIAL DIAGNOSIS FOR THIS FINDING
When seeing a spine sign, it is important to keep in mind the following possible causes of this finding:
- Right lower lobe pneumonia
- Left lower lobe pneumonia
KEY FEATURES TO LOOK FOR WHEN CHARACTERIZING THE FINDING
When seeing a spine sign, there are a few important radiological features one should look at to try and characterize the finding. These features can help navigate the differential diagnosis above.
Page Updated: 03.01.2017