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J Pediatr Orthop. 1984 May;4(3):346-52.

Roentgenographical study of the stability of the cervical spine in children.


A roentgenographical study of the supposedly normal cervical spine in 40 children is reported. At the upper cervical level, the validity of the criteria in the literature (especially the atlantodental distance on the lateral view) was confirmed, and an upper limit was determined for children. A study of the atlantoaxial relationship on the anteroposterior view in neutral position and in lateral position was performed. At the lower cervical level, measurements according to Penning (Am J Roentgenol 1978;30:317-26) and Cattel and Filtzer (J Bone Joint Surg [Am] 1965;47:1295-308) were applied to children and compared level by level at each age. This study allows a better comprehension of the mobility of the cervical spine in children and offers an explanation for suspicious roentgenographical features after trauma.

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