Whiplash injury

Background

  • Also known as Acute Cervical Strain
  • Sudden acceleration-deceleration trauma that occurs when car is rear-ended

Clinical Features

  • Pain, stiffness, paracervical muscle tenderness
  • Isolated cervical strain should have normal neuro exam

Differential Diagnosis

Neck Trauma

Evaluation

  • Clinical diagnosis by history and physical exam
  • Use C-Spine (NEXUS) criteria to determine whether imaging is required
  • Consider brain, cord, carotid/vertebral artery dissection if neuro findings are present

Management

Disposition

  • Generally outpatient management

See Also

External Links

References