Intracranial Aneurysm and Hemorrhage Following Skull Caliper Traction: Review of Skull Traction Complications

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Serious complications of callper skull traction for fracture-dislocations of the cervical spine are so rare that they are not discussed in most standard textbooks. A fuslform intracranial aneurysm which followed the placement of skull tongs is reported. Subsequent aneurysmal rupture produced an intracerebral hematoma requiring drainage. The literature recording the complications of skull caliper traction is reviewed and the indications for skull traction and the need for scrupulous surgical technique are emphasized.

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