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Traffic Inj Prev. 2006 Dec;7(4):389-99.

Cervical spine loads and intervertebral motions during whiplash.

Author information

1
Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, Connecticut 06520-8071, USA. paul.ivancic@yale.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To quantify the dynamic loads and intervertebral motions throughout the cervical spine during simulated rear impacts.

METHODS:

Using a biofidelic whole cervical spine model with muscle force replication and surrogate head and bench-top mini-sled, impacts were simulated at 3.5, 5, 6.5, and 8 g horizontal accelerations of the T1 vertebra. Inverse dynamics was used to calculate the dynamic cervical spine loads at the centers of mass of the head and vertebrae (C1-T1). The average peak loads and intervertebral motions were statistically compared (P < 0.05) throughout the cervical spine.

RESULTS:

Load and motion peaks generally increased with increasing impact acceleration. The average extension moment peaks at the lower cervical spine, reaching 40.7 Nm at C7-T1, significantly exceeded the moment peaks at the upper and middle cervical spine. The highest average axial tension peak of 276.9 N was observed at the head, significantly greater than at C4 through T1. The average axial compression peaks, reaching 223.2 N at C5, were significantly greater at C4 through T1, as compared to head-C1. The highest average posterior shear force peak of 269.5 N was observed at T1.

CONCLUSION:

During whiplash, the cervical spine is subjected to not only bending moments, but also axial and shear forces. These combined loads caused both intervertebral rotations and translations.

PMID:
17114097
DOI:
10.1080/15389580600789127
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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