Australian Family Physician
Australian Family Physician


Volume 38, Issue 1, January-February 2009

Upper cervical spine injuries in elderly patients

M Sami Walid Nadezhda V Zaytseva
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Elderly patients may sustain upper cervical spine injury without neurological symptoms or radiographic evidence of fracture.
This review discusses the prevalence and presentations of upper cervical spine injury in the elderly, and the use of imaging in the evaluation of such injuries.
Typically, upper cervical spine injuries are caused by hyperextension in patients with degenerative changes of the senescent spine. Multiplanar imaging of the cervical spine in elderly patients with persistent post-traumatic head and neck symptoms, even after seemingly minor trauma, is decisive.

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Australian Family Physician RACGP

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