AO Spine classification systems

The AO Spine classification systems is a group of imaging morphology-based classification system, combined with clinical factors for injury of spinal trauma. It is designed to be a simple and reproducible method of describing injury patterns.

AO Spine has published four injury classification systems:


Although not all clinicians or radiologists will be familiar with the exact alphanumerical classification of each fracture within these systems, they use best practice terminology and are built upon and share features with many prior attempts at reaching an 'ideal' classification.

Also, they capture important high-level groupings of injuries. As such, being familiar with the overall structure, key features, and terminology of these classification systems is worthwhile.

About the AO Spine group

The AO Spine group is an 'international community of spine surgeons generating, distrib­uting, and exchanging knowledge to advance science and the spine care profession through research, education, and community development. With this collaborative approach, AO Spine continues to advance spine care worldwide' .

Illustrations and classifications have been reproduced with permission.