Cervical spine fractures in geriatric blunt trauma patients with low-energy mechanism: are clinical predictors adequate?

Sherwin P. Schrag, Lori J. Toedter, Nathaniel McQuay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Studies have identified clinical predictors to guide radiologic evaluation of the cervical spine in geriatric patients. We hypothesized that clinical predictors are not adequate in the identification of cervical spine fractures in geriatric blunt trauma patients with low-energy mechanism. Methods: A retrospective case-control study was performed on geriatric blunt trauma patients sustaining low-energy trauma from January 2000 to January 2006. A data form including 8 clinical predictors was completed for each group. Results: There were 35 study and 64 control patients identified. Both groups were similar in age (study 83.6 vs control 81.2) and injury severity score (study 9.06 vs control 9.61). Only neck tenderness exceeded the expected occurrence in the presence of a cervical spine injury (χ2 = 18.1, P = .001) in just 45.5% of the study group. Conclusions: Clinical predictors appear inadequate for the evaluation of the cervical spine in geriatric trauma patients with low-energy mechanism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-173
Number of pages4
JournalAmerican journal of surgery
Volume195
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2008

Keywords

  • Blunt trauma
  • Cervical spine
  • Falls
  • Fractures
  • Geriatric

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery

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