The anatomic characteristics of the cervical spine predispose it to injury by direct as well as indirect forces. According to published reports, as many as 85 percent of neck disorders result from acute or repetitive injuries.
Whiplash describes the injury caused by an abrupt hyperextension of the neck from an indirect force, as in a rear-end motor vehicle collision. The body is propelled forward in a linear and horizontal manner. The head is then thrown backward, which causes acute hyperextension of the cervical spine. Recoil of the head with marked cervical neck flexion occurs, and then, the head and neck return to the neutral position. [Read more...]