Anatomical considerations of C2 lamina for the placement of translaminar screw: a review of the literature

  • D. Chytas
  • D. S. Korres
  • G. C. Babis
  • N. E. Efstathopoulos
  • E. C. Papadopoulos
  • K. Markatos
  • V. S. Nikolaou
General Review • SPINE - CERVICAL



The thorough knowledge of C2 lamina anatomy is essential for the avoidance of complications during screw fixation. We performed a review of the literature, aiming to detect what was found about anatomical feasibility of C2 translaminar fixation in different populations, along with possible recommendations for the avoidance of complications, and to detect whether factors such as race or gender could influence axis lamina anatomy and fixation feasibility.


We performed a search in PubMed and Cochrane database of systematic reviews for studies which correlated axis lamina anatomy with fixation feasibility. We extracted data concerning measurements on C2 lamina, the methods and conclusions of the studies.


Twenty-six studies met our inclusion criteria. The studies mainly focused on Asian populations. Male gender was generally related to larger anatomical parameters of C2 lamina. The use of a C2 translaminar screw with a diameter of 3.5 mm was generally feasible, even in children, but there was disagreement about risk of vertebral artery injury. Computed tomography was most frequently recommended preoperatively. Three-dimensional reconstruction was suggested by some authors.


C2 lamina anatomy generally permitted screw fixation in most studies, but there was disagreement about risk of vertebral artery injury. Preoperative computed tomography was generally recommended, while, according to some authors, three-dimensional reconstruction could be essential. However, there is a relative lack of studies about non-Asian populations. More research could further illustrate the anatomy of C2 lamina, clarify the safety of axis fixation for more populations and perhaps modify preoperative imaging protocols.


C2 Lamina Anatomy Screw 


Complience with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag France SAS, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.2nd Orthopaedic Department of University of AthensKonstantopouleio HospitalNea IoniaGreece
  2. 2.AthensGreece

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