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Giant cell tumor of the spine: computed tomography appearance and review of the literature

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      Abstract

      Giant cell tumor of the vertebral body is a rare but well-recognized entity with a reported incidence between 1.3% and 9.3%, of all giant cell tumors. It has been suggested that computed tomography may be helpful in making the diagnosis, although computed tomography appearances have only been described on two occasions. A case of giant cell tumor of the thoracic spine and a review of the literature regarding this entity are presented. The computed tomography appearance of this lesion is described. However, a distinctive pattern, as previously suggested, is not demonstrated. Although we are not convinced that computed tomography provides a definitive diagnosis in cases of spinal giant cell tumor, it is a valuable asset in defining the extent of the tumor and in posttherapy evaluation and follow-up.

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