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Clin Sports Med. 1998 Jan;17(1):137-46.

Guidelines for return to contact or collision sport after a cervical spine injury.

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Neurosurgery Service, Emerson Hospital, Concord, Massachusetts, USA.


Pro football is a violent, dangerous sport. To play it other than violently would be "imbecilic," according to the late Vince Lombardi. Many sports hold the potential for serious permanent spine and spinal cord injury. Fortunately, the incidence of catastrophic spine and spinal cord injuries has dramatically declined in the past 10 to 15 years. This decline is, in part, attributable to the development of sports-related spine injury registries, the education of the pathomechanics of these injuries, and the implementation of appropriate preventive measures. This article focuses on sports-related spinal cord and nerve injuries, ranging from the mild "stinger" syndrome to complete quadriplegia, with emphasis on recommendations for return to competition.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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