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This article has been peer reviewed and is published in Journal of Brachial Plexus and Peripheral Nerve Injury Volume 2, Issue 1, 6 June 2007, Article number 13. The published version is available at DOI: 10.1186/1749-7221-2-13. Copyright © BioMed Central Ltd.


We present a case of a 35-year-old active rugby player presenting with a history of recurrent burner syndrome thought secondary to an osteoblastoma involving the posterior arch of the atlas. Radiographically, the lesion had features typical for a large osteoid osteoma or osteoblastoma, including osseous expansion, peripheral sclerosis and bony hypertrophy, internal lucency, and even suggestion of a central nidus. The patient subsequently underwent an en bloc resection of the posterior atlas via a standard posterior approach. The surgery revealed very good clinical results. In this report, we will discuss in detail, the presentation, treatment, and return to play recommendations involving this patient.