To provide certified athletic trainers, team physicians, emergency responders, and other health care professionals with recommendations on how to best manage a catastrophic cervical spine injury in the athlete.
The relative incidence of catastrophic cervical spine injury in sports is low compared with other injuries. However, cervical spine injuries necessitate delicate and precise management, often involving the combined efforts of a variety of health care providers. The outcome of a catastrophic cervical spine injury depends on the efficiency of this management process and the timeliness of transfer to a controlled environment for diagnosis and treatment.
Recommendations are based on current evidence pertaining to prevention strategies to reduce the incidence of cervical spine injuries in sport; emergency planning and preparation to increase management efficiency; maintaining or creating neutral alignment in the cervical spine; accessing and maintaining the airway; stabilizing and transferring the athlete with a suspected cervical spine injury; managing the athlete participating in an equipment-laden sport, such as football, hockey, or lacrosse; and considerations in the emergency department.
catastrophic injuries; emergency medicine; neurologic outcomes
Spinal pain is a common problem, and disability related to spinal pain has great consequence in terms of human suffering, medical costs and costs to society. The traditional approach to the non-surgical management of patients with spinal pain, as well as to research in spinal pain, has been such that the type of treatment any given patient receives is determined more by what type of practitioner he or she sees, rather than by diagnosis. Furthermore, determination of treatment depends more on the type of practitioner than by the needs of the patient. Much needed is an approach to clinical management and research that allows clinicians to base treatment decisions on a reliable and valid diagnostic strategy leading to treatment choices that result in demonstrable outcomes in terms of pain relief and functional improvement. The challenges of diagnosis in patients with spinal pain, however, are that spinal pain is often multifactorial, the factors involved are wide ranging, and for most of these factors there exist no definitive objective tests.
The theoretical model of a diagnosis-based clinical decision rule has been developed that may provide clinicians with an approach to non-surgical spine pain patients that allows for specific treatment decisions based on a specific diagnosis. This is not a classification scheme, but a thought process that attempts to identify most important features present in each individual patient. Presented here is a description of the proposed approach, in which reliable and valid assessment procedures are used to arrive at a working diagnosis which considers the disparate factors contributing to spinal pain. Treatment decisions are based on the diagnosis and the outcome of treatment can be measured.
In this paper, the theoretical model of a proposed diagnosis-based clinical decision rule is presented. In a subsequent manuscript, the current evidence for the approach will be systematically reviewed, and we will present a research strategy required to fill in the gaps in the current evidence, as well as to investigate the decision rule as a whole.
Comprehensive evaluation of the morphology of the spine and of the whole body is essential in order to correctly manage patients suffering from progressive idiopathic scoliosis. Although methodology of clinical and radiological examination is well described in manuals of orthopaedics, there is deficit of data which clinical and radiological parameters are considered in everyday practise. Recently, an increasing tendency to extend scoliosis examination beyond the measure of the Cobb angle can be observed, reflecting a more patient-oriented approach. Such evaluation often involves surface parameters, aesthetics, function and quality of life.
Aim of the study
To investigate current recommendations of experts on methodology of evaluation of the patient with spinal deformity, essentially idiopathic scoliosis.
Structured Delphi procedure for collecting and processing knowledge from a group of experts with a series of questionnaires and controlled opinion feedback was performed. Experience and opinions of the professionals - physicians and physiotherapists managing scoliosis patients - were studied. According to Delphi method a Meeting Questionnaire (MQ) has been developed, resulting from a preliminary Pre-Meeting Questionnaire (PMQ) which had been previously discussed and approved on line. The MQ was circulated among the SOSORT experts during Consensus Session on "Measurements" which took place at the Annual Meeting of the Society, totally 23 panellists being engaged. Clinical, radiological and surface topography parameters were checked for agreement.
90% agreement or more was reached in 35 items and superior than 75% agreement was reached in further 25 items. An evaluation form was proposed to be used by clinicians and researchers.
The consensus was reached on evaluation of the morphology of the patient with idiopathic scoliosis, comprising clinical, radiological and, to less extend, surface topography assessment. Considering the variety of parameters indicated by the panellists, the Cobb angle, yet the gold standard, can be seen neither as the unique nor the only decisive parameter in the management of patients with idiopathic scoliosis.
A temporomandibular disorder (TMD) is a very common problem affecting up to 33% of individuals within their lifetime. TMD is often viewed as a repetitive motion disorder of the masticatory structures and has many similarities to musculoskeletal disorders of other parts of the body. Treatment often involves similar principles as other regions as well. However, patients with TMD and concurrent cervical pain exhibit a complex symptomatic behavior that is more challenging than isolated TMD symptoms. Although routinely managed by medical and dental practitioners, TMD may be more effectively cared for when physical therapists are involved in the treatment process. Hence, a listing of situations when practitioners should consider referring TMD patients to a physical therapist can be provided to the practitioners in each physical therapist's region. This paper should assist physical therapists with evaluating, treating, insurance billing, and obtaining referrals for TMD patients.
Dentistry; Physical Therapy; Temporomandibular Disorders; Temporomandibular Joint
Physicians in Canadian emergency departments (EDs) annually treat 185,000 alert and stable trauma victims who are at risk for cervical spine (C-spine) injury. However, only 0.9% of these patients have suffered a cervical spine fracture. Current use of radiography is not efficient. The Canadian C-Spine Rule is designed to allow physicians to be more selective and accurate in ordering C-spine radiography, and to rapidly clear the C-spine without the need for radiography in many patients. The goal of this phase III study is to evaluate the effectiveness of an active strategy to implement the Canadian C-Spine Rule into physician practice. Specific objectives are to: 1) determine clinical impact, 2) determine sustainability, 3) evaluate performance, and 4) conduct an economic evaluation.
We propose a matched-pair cluster design study that compares outcomes during three consecutive 12-months "before," "after," and "decay" periods at six pairs of "intervention" and "control" sites. These 12 hospital ED sites will be stratified as "teaching" or "community" hospitals, matched according to baseline C-spine radiography ordering rates, and then allocated within each pair to either intervention or control groups. During the "after" period at the intervention sites, simple and inexpensive strategies will be employed to actively implement the Canadian C-Spine Rule. The following outcomes will be assessed: 1) measures of clinical impact, 2) performance of the Canadian C-Spine Rule, and 3) economic measures. During the 12-month "decay" period, implementation strategies will continue, allowing us to evaluate the sustainability of the effect. We estimate a sample size of 4,800 patients in each period in order to have adequate power to evaluate the main outcomes.
Phase I successfully derived the Canadian C-Spine Rule and phase II confirmed the accuracy and safety of the rule, hence, the potential for physicians to improve care. What remains unknown is the actual change in clinical behaviors that can be affected by implementation of the Canadian C-Spine Rule, and whether implementation can be achieved with simple and inexpensive measures. We believe that the Canadian C-Spine Rule has the potential to significantly reduce health care costs and improve the efficiency of patient flow in busy Canadian EDs.
There is uncertainty about the optimal approach to screen for clinically important cervical spine (C-spine) injury following blunt trauma. We conducted a systematic review to investigate the diagnostic accuracy of the Canadian C-spine rule and the National Emergency X-Radiography Utilization Study (NEXUS) criteria, 2 rules that are available to assist emergency physicians to assess the need for cervical spine imaging.
We identified studies by an electronic search of CINAHL, Embase and MEDLINE. We included articles that reported on a cohort of patients who experienced blunt trauma and for whom clinically important cervical spine injury detectable by diagnostic imaging was the differential diagnosis; evaluated the diagnostic accuracy of the Canadian C-spine rule or NEXUS or both; and used an adequate reference standard. We assessed the methodologic quality using the Quality Assessment of Diagnostic Accuracy Studies criteria. We used the extracted data to calculate sensitivity, specificity, likelihood ratios and post-test probabilities.
We included 15 studies of modest methodologic quality. For the Canadian C-spine rule, sensitivity ranged from 0.90 to 1.00 and specificity ranged from 0.01 to 0.77. For NEXUS, sensitivity ranged from 0.83 to 1.00 and specificity ranged from 0.02 to 0.46. One study directly compared the accuracy of these 2 rules using the same cohort and found that the Canadian C-spine rule had better accuracy. For both rules, a negative test was more informative for reducing the probability of a clinically important cervical spine injury.
Based on studies with modest methodologic quality and only one direct comparison, we found that the Canadian C-spine rule appears to have better diagnostic accuracy than the NEXUS criteria. Future studies need to follow rigorous methodologic procedures to ensure that the findings are as free of bias as possible.
As millions of emergency department (ED) visits each year include wound care, emergency care providers must remain experts in acute wound management. The variety of acute wounds presenting to the ED challenge the physician to select the most appropriate management to facilitate healing. A complete wound history along with anatomic and specific medical considerations for each patient provides the basis of decision making for wound management. It is essential to apply an evidence‐based approach and consider each wound individually in order to create the optimal conditions for wound healing.
A comprehensive evidence‐based approach to acute wound management is an essential skill set for any emergency physician or acute care practitioner. This review provides an overview of current evidence and addresses frequent pitfalls.
A systematic review of the literature for acute wound management was performed.
A structured MEDLINE search was performed regarding acute wound management including established wound care guidelines. The data obtained provided the framework for evidence‐based recommendations and current best practices for wound care.
Acute wound management varies based on the wound location and characteristics. No single approach can be applied to all wounds; however, a systematic approach to acute wound care integrated with current best practices provides the framework for exceptional wound management.
Acute tissue injury; Wound assessment; Wound irrigation; Wound closure; Assessment; Cleansing; Closure; Irrigation; Wound
Ankylosing spondylitis (AS) is generally easy to diagnose when the characteristic findings of the “bamboo” spine and fused sacroiliac joints are present on radiographs. Unfortunately, these changes are usually seen late in the disease after tremendous suffering has been incurred by the patient. Diagnostic delay averages seven to ten years. Historically, once the diagnosis was made, the treatment options were often inadequate or poorly tolerated in many individuals. This condition most often starts in early adulthood when people are typically in the earlier stages of their careers, resulting in diminished workforce participation and decreased quality of life. If an individual has a family physician, this might be the first encounter with a healthcare provider. Quite often, the initial practitioner is sought at a public walk-in clinic or chiropractic office.
In recent years, there have been two major developments in the management of AS that make earlier diagnosis possible and offer the hope of alleviating pain and preventing structural changes that result in loss of function. These developments include the use of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to visualize the inflammatory changes in the sacroiliac joint and the axial spine, and the demonstration that tumor necrosis factor (TNF) blocking agents are highly efficacious in reducing spinal inflammation and possibly in slowing radiographic progression.
This review outlines diagnostic strategies that can help identify AS in its earlier stages. Special attention is focused on treatment advances, including the use of anti-TNF agents, and how these medications have been incorporated into clinical recommendations for daily use.
spondylitis; diagnosis; primary care
No randomized control trial to date has studied the use of cervical spine management strategies in cases of severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) at risk for cervical spine instability solely due to damaged ligaments. A computer algorithm is used to decide between four cervical spine management strategies. A model assumption is that the emergency room evaluation shows no spinal deficit and a computerized tomogram of the cervical spine excludes the possibility of fracture of cervical vertebrae. The study's goal is to determine cervical spine management strategies that maximize brain injury functional survival while minimizing quadriplegia.
The severity of TBI is categorized as unstable, high risk and stable based on intracranial hypertension, hypoxemia, hypotension, early ventilator associated pneumonia, admission Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) and age. Complications resulting from cervical spine management are simulated using three decision trees. Each case starts with an amount of primary and secondary brain injury and ends as a functional survivor, severely brain injured, quadriplegic or dead. Cervical spine instability is studied with one-way and two-way sensitivity analyses providing rankings of cervical spine management strategies for probabilities of management complications based on QALYs. Early collar removal received more QALYs than the alternative strategies in most arrangements of these comparisons. A limitation of the model is the absence of testing against an independent data set.
When clinical logic and components of cervical spine management are systematically altered, changes that improve health outcomes are identified. In the absence of controlled clinical studies, the results of this comparative computer assessment show that early collar removal is preferred over a wide range of realistic inputs for this subset of traumatic brain injury. Future research is needed on identifying factors in projecting awakening from coma and the role of delirium in these cases.
Neoplastic cervical spine lesions are seen infrequently by the spinal surgeon. The surgical management of these tumors, particularly with associated neurovascular compromise, is challenging in terms of achieving proper resection and spinal stabilization and ensuring no subsequent recurrence or failure of fixation. In this report we highlight some of the problems encountered in the surgical management of tumors involving the cervical spine with techniques applied for gross total resection of the tumor without compromising the vertebral arteries. Ten patients with neoplastic cervical spine lesions were managed in our study. The common cardinal presentation was neck and arm pain with progressive cervical radiculo-myelopathy. All patients had plain X-rays, computer tomography scans, and magnetic resonance imaging of the cervical spine. Digital subtraction or magnetic resonance angiograms were performed on both vertebral arteries when the pathology was found to be in proximity to the vertebral artery. When a tumor blush with feeders was evident, endovascular embolization to minimize intraoperative bleeding was also considered. A single approach or a combined anterior cervical approach for corpectomy and cage-with-plate fixation and posterior decompression for resection of the rest of the tumor with spinal fixation was then accomplished as indicated. All cases made a good neurological recovery and had no neural or vascular complications. On the long-term follow-up of the survivors there was no local recurrence or surgical failure. Only three patients died: two from the primary malignancy and one from pulmonary embolism. This report documents a safe and reliable way to deal with neoplastic cervical spine lesions in proximity to vertebral arteries with preservation of both arteries.
cervical spine tumors; spinal fixation; vertebral artery; radical resection; vascular complications.
Traumatic injuries of the spine and spinal cord are common and potentially devastating lesions. We present a comprehensive overview of the classification of vertebral fractures, based on morphology (e.g., wedge, (bi)concave, or crush fractures) or on the mechanism of injury (flexion-compression, axial compression, flexion-distraction, or rotational fracture-dislocation lesions). The merits and limitations of different imaging techniques are discussed, including plain X-ray films, multi-detector computed tomography (MDCT), and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) for the detection. There is growing evidence that state-of-the-art imaging techniques provide answers to some of the key questions in the management of patients with spine and spinal cord trauma: is the fracture stable or unstable? Is the fracture recent or old? Is the fracture benign or malignant? In summary, we show that high-quality radiological investigations are essential in the diagnosis and management of patients with spinal trauma.
Spine, trauma; Spine, fractures; Spine, injuries; Spine, MR; Spine, CT
Dialysis-related spondyloarthropathy is a rare cause of spinal deformity and cervical myelopathy. Optimal management of cervical spine spondyloarthropathy often requires circumferential reconstructive surgery, because affected patients typically have both the anterior column and the facet joints compromised. The occasional presence of noncontiguous or "skip lesions" adds an additional level of complexity to surgical management, because decompression and fusion in an isolated segment of neural compression can worsen spine deformity by applying increased stress to adjacent cervical spine segments. We report two cases of hemodialysis patients who presented with cervical myelopathy and initially had anterior cervical discectomy or corpectomy. Because symptoms recurred due to hardware failure, both patients required posterior spine fusion as well. In retrospect, because of the hardware failure, both of these patients might have benefited from a circumferential (combined anterior and posterior) cervical spine reconstruction as their initial treatment.
Hemodialysis; spondyloarthropathy; surgical management.
Dysphagia is a common presentation in older people. Diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis affecting the cervical spine is an uncommon cause of dysphagia and may be overlooked.
We present the case of an 88-year-old man with dysphagia and weight loss. Initial investigation with upper gastrointestinal endoscopy was inconclusive. A diagnosis of diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis as a cause for dysphagia was eventually made using video fluoroscopy. This showed a bony prominence impeding swallow at the level of C3. The patient was unfit for surgical management so a percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy tube was inserted for feeding.
The diagnosis of diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis involving the cervical spine often goes unrecognised as a cause of dysphagia despite its prevalence in the elderly population. Diagnosis is made using cervical radiographs, barium swallow and computed tomography. There is a risk of perforation with endoscopy in patients who have cervical diffuse idiopathic skeletal hyperostosis. Conservative management includes non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications and a modified diet. Surgery may be considered in certain patients where conservative management fails.
The aim of the article was to present an overview of the management strategies of dentin hypersensitivity (DHS) and summarize and discuss the therapeutic options.
Materials and methods
A PubMed literature search was conducted to identify articles dealing with dentin hypersensitivity prophylaxis and treatment. We focussed on meta-analyses of available or controlled clinical trials.
DHS therapy should start with noninvasive individual prophylactic home-care approaches. In-office therapy follows with nerve desensitizing, precipitating, or plugging agents. If the hypersensitivity persists, depending on the hard and soft tissue components at reevaluation, i.e., presence or absence of cervical lesions and the gingival contour, adhesive restorations including sealing or mucogingival surgery may be an option. They allow for the establishment of a physicomechanical barrier. As the placebo effect may play an important role, adequate patient management strategies and positive reinforcement may improve the management of DHS in the future.
Lifelong maintenance under the premise of strict control of the causative factors is crucial in the management of DHS.
Clinicians are faced with a broad spectrum of therapeutic options. Therapy should not only focus on pain reduction or better elimination but also on the modification of the exposed cervical dentin area based on the defect type.
Dentin hypersensitivity; Therapy; Review
Mechanical neck disorder (MND) is one of the most common health issues and is characterized by restricted cervical mobility. However, traditional kinematic information often focuses on primary movement in the cardinal plane, which seems insufficient to fully determine the kinematics of the cervical spine because of the complexity of the anatomical structures involved. Therefore, the current investigation aimed to modify the concept of the three-dimensional workspace to propose an objective mathematical model to quantify the complicated kinematics of the cervical spine. In addition, the observation evaluated the characteristics of the cervical workspace in asymptomatic and MND groups. Seventeen healthy volunteers and twenty-five individuals with MND participated in the study and executed the motion of circumduction to establish the cervical workspace using an electromagnetic tracking system. The results produced a mathematical model to successfully quantify the cervical workspace. Moreover, MND groups demonstrated significant reduction in the normalization of the cervical workspace with respect to the length of the head-cervical complex. Accordingly, the current study provided a new concept for understanding the complicated kinematics of the cervical spine. The cervical workspace could be a useful index to evaluate the extent of impairment of the cervical spine and monitor the efficacy of rehabilitation programs for patients with MND.
mechanical neck disorder; kinematics of cervical spine; cervical workspace; motion of cervical circumduction; electromagnetic tracking system
OBJECTIVES: Cervical spine disorders are common in the older population. The paravertebral muscles are essential to the support and stabilisation of the cervical spine but have been little studied. The aim was to determine whether pathological changes develop in these muscles in patients with severe cervical spine disease, which, if present, might contribute to the pathogenesis and symptomatology of their disorder. METHODS: Open biopsies of superficial and deep paravertebral muscles were obtained during the course of surgical procedures to alleviate cervical myelopathy. Most of these patients had cervical spondylosis or rheumatoid arthritis involving the cervical spine. The biopsies were compared with muscle obtained at necropsy from patients without a history of cervical spine or neuromuscular disorder. RESULTS: Muscle from both the study and control groups showed a similar range and severity of abnormalities. In several patients, grouped fibre atrophy suggested chronic partial denervation. Most biopsies showed type 1 fibre predominance and selective type 2 fibre atrophy. Ragged red fibres were a frequent finding and electron microscopy disclosed accumulations of mitochondria, a small proportion of which contained rounded, or longitudinally oriented, single osmiophilic inclusions. Fibres containing core-like areas were also frequent. These pathological features were seen with increasing severity and frequency with increasing age. CONCLUSIONS: The paravertebral cervical muscles develop pathological abnormalities with increasing age with both neurogenic and myopathic features, the pathogenesis of which is probably multifactorial. Such a muscle disorder would be expected to be accompanied by functional impairment which may contribute to the development and symptomatology of cervical spine disease with increasing age.
Headache is a highly prevalent disorder. Irrespective of the headache diagnosis it is often accompanied with neck pain and -stiffness. Due to this common combination of headache and neck pain, physical treatments of the cervical spine are often considered. The additional value of these treatments to standard medical care or usual care (UC) is insufficiently documented.
We therefore wanted to compare the treatment effects of UC alone and in combination with manual therapy (MT) in patients with a combination of headache and neck pain. UC consisted of a stepped treatment approach according to the Dutch General Practitioners Guideline for headache, the additional MT consisted of articular mobilisations and low load exercises.
Due to insufficient enrolment the study was terminated prematurely. We aim to report not only our preliminary clinical findings but also to discuss the encountered difficulties and to formulate recommendations for future research.
A randomised clinical trial was conducted. Thirty-seven patients were included and randomly allocated to one of both treatment groups. The treatment period was 6 weeks, with follow-up measurements at weeks 7, 12 and 26. Primary outcome measures were global perceived effect (GPE) and the impact of the headache using the Headache Impact Test (HIT-6). Reduction in headache frequency, pain intensity, medication intake, absenteeism and the use of additional professional help were secondary outcome measures
Significant improvements on primary and secondary outcome measures were recorded in both treatment groups. No significant differences between both treatment groups were found. The number of recruited patients remained low despite various strategies.
It appears that both treatment strategies can have equivalent positive influences on headache complaints. Additional studies with larger study populations are needed to draw firm conclusions. Recommendations to increase patient inflow in primary care trials, such as the use of an extended network of participating physicians and of clinical alert software applications, are discussed.
Trial registration number
Objective: High-energy impact to the head, neck, and shoulder can result in cervical spine as well as brachial plexus injuries. Because cervical spine injuries are more common, this tends to be the initial focus for management. We present a case in which the initial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) was somewhat misleading and a detailed neurological exam lead to the correct diagnosis.
Clinical presentation: A 19-year-old man presented to the hospital following a shoulder injury during football practice. The patient immediately complained of significant pain in his neck, shoulder, and right arm and the inability to move his right arm. He was stabilized in the field for a presumed cervical-spine injury and transported to the emergency department.
Intervention: Initial radiographic assessment (C-spine CT, right shoulder x-ray) showed no bony abnormality. MRI of the cervical-spine showed T2 signal change and cord swelling thought to be consistent with a cord contusion. With adequate pain control, a detailed neurological examination was possible and was consistent with an upper brachial plexus avulsion injury that was confirmed by CT myelogram. The patient failed to make significant neurological recovery and he underwent spinal accessory nerve grafting to the suprascapular nerve to restore shoulder abduction and external rotation, while the phrenic nerve was grafted to the musculocutaneous nerve to restore elbow flexion.
Conclusion: Cervical spinal-cord injuries and brachial plexus injuries can occur by the same high energy mechanisms and can occur simultaneously. As in this case, MRI findings can be misleading and a detailed physical examination is the key to diagnosis. However, this can be difficult in polytrauma patients with upper extremity injuries, head injuries or concomitant spinal-cord injury. Finally, prompt diagnosis and early surgical renerveration have been associated with better long-term recovery with certain types of injury.
This is a Clinical Management Conference (CMC) presented at a community hospital. It differs from conventional teaching conferences in that (1) the focus of analysis is direct patient benefit and diagnosis is regarded as a secondary process, (2) it seeks to provide an understanding of logical approaches to patient management while confronted with numerous uncertainties caused by an inadequate scientific base, (3) there is no absolute answer provided and (4) the conference involves the entire audience of physicians as direct participants.
A practical approach for assessing patient education needs in the ambulatory care setting was developed, tested, and administered to 100 individuals with four non-acute clinical problems. The approach allowed collection, with a single instrument, of a range of information pertinent to the management of a wide mix of disorders. Knowledge about diagnosis, medications, nonmedicinal procedures, emergency situations, and prognosis was collected as well as self-estimation of knowledge and personal information needs.
While the assessment can be conducted by a physician, nurse, mid-level practitioner, or health educator in approximately five minutes, it can also be conducted in approximately ten minutes by other appropriately trained personnel. The information gained is useful to clinicians, health educators, and administrators. This practical approach to the assessment of patient learning needs is considered to have applicability for numerous conditions and a variety of clinical settings. The condensed patient learning needs assessment tool is provided (Table 1).
Cervicogenic vertigo is defined as a sensation of rotation, resulting from an alteration of the neck proprioceptive afferents of the upper cervical spine. As a consequence of their association with the vestibular nucleus, patients frequently experience a sensation of rotation or falling when they turn or flex and extend their head. Nystagmus may be present but no other neurological deficits are typically found. Restrictions in joint play are commonly palpated in the upper cervical spine motion segments, in particular C1-C3. Although spinal manipulation to the involved segments has provided relief, consideration of other etiological factors is essential. This paper discusses the etiology, diagnosis, and management of cervicogenic vertigo. Three cases illustrating the typical presentation and management are included.
vertigo; cervical spine; mechanoreceptors; manipulation; chiropractic
To review the ways attention deficit disorder (ADD) presents in adults in
primary care and to suggest treatment approaches.
SOURCES OF INFORMATION
PsycINFO, PubMed, and Academic Search Elite databases were searched. Level I
evidence supports the effectiveness of stimulants for treating ADD in
adults, and mixed evidence (levels I and II) supports the effectiveness of
Attention deficit disorder is a prevalent but often unrecognized disorder in
adults. The diagnosis, which must include onset of symptoms before age 7, is
often missed. This could be because family physicians are not always
familiar with the presentation in adults, because it frequently presents
with comorbid problems, or because specific questions are not asked to
elicit the diagnosis. Diagnosis is based on clinical assessment often
assisted by self-rating scales. Management includes support and education,
helping patients develop additional structure in their lives and make
necessary behavioural changes, enhancing self-esteem, supporting and
educating families, and prescribing medication. Medication choices include
stimulants and antidepressants; medication can benefit up to 60% of people
It is crucial for primary care physicians to identify ADD in adults and to
initiate treatment or referral. Several simple interventions can be
Retrospective review of the results of somatosensory evoked potentials (SSEP) performed in cervical spine surgery.
To evaluate the utility of spinal cord monitoring during cervical spine surgery in a single surgeon's practice, based on how often it prompted an intraoperative intervention.
Overview of Literature
Intraoperative monitoring during cervical spine surgery is not a universally accepted standard of care. This is due in part to the paucity of literature regarding the impact of monitoring on patient management or outcome.
SSEP for tibial, median, and ulnar nerves were monitored in 809 consecutive cervical spine operations performed by a single surgeon. The average patient age was 52 years (range, 2 to 88 years), with 472 males and 339 females. Cases were screened for significant degradation or loss of SSEP data. Specific attention was paid to 1) what interventions were performed in response to the SSEP degradation with subsequent improvement, and 2) whether SSEP changes corresponded with postoperative neurological deficits.
Seventeen of 809 patients (2.1%) had SSEP degradation that met warning criteria and therefore prompted intervention. Release of shoulder tape (8) or traction (4) most often resulted in SSEP improvement. Failure of SSEP data to return to within acceptable limits of baseline was associated with neurological deficit (p=0.04). Two patients awoke with new postoperative neurological deficits, which resolved in 6 hours and 2 months respectively. Patients with ossification of the posterior longitudinal ligament (OPLL) were at seven-fold greater risk of intraoperative SSEP degradation.
SSEP monitoring in this surgical population proved sensitive to perioperative factors which may increase the risk of postoperative neurologic deficit, and probably prevented neurological deficits in 15 of 809 patients (1.9%). Improvement in data following intervention appears to correlate well with unchanged neurologic status. Experience with intraoperative monitoring in this patient series has led to incorporation of these techniques as a standard of care in cervical spine surgeries performed by this surgeon.
Somatosensory evoked potentials; Cervical spine surgery; Postoperative neurological deficits
The Chronic Care Model (Wagner, WHO) aims to improve the functioning and clinical situation of chronic patients by focussing on the patient, the practice team and the conditions that determine the functioning of the team.
The patient is the most important actor who must be stimulated proactively by a competent, integrated practice team. Six interdependent conditional components are essential: health care organisation, delivery system design, community resources and policies, self-management support systems, decision support and clinical information systems.
While the Chronic Care Model focuses on quality and effectiveness of care, disease management programmes underline more the efficiency of care. These programmes apply industrial management principles in health care. Information about process, structure and outcome is gathered and used systematically and human and material sources are used efficiently.
There is evidence that the approaches of the Chronic Care Model and disease management can be integrated. Both approaches underline the need of information and focus on the patient as the main actor to improve and that a balance can be found between effectiveness and efficiency. Ideas will be given how the Chronic Care Model can be used as a framework for the development of a European way of disease management for people with a chronic condition.
chronic care model; disease management programme
Continued innovation in surgery requires a knowledge and understanding of historical advances with a recognition of successes and failures.
To identify these successes and failures, we selectively reviewed historical literature on cervical spine surgery with respect to the development of (1) surgical approaches, (2) management of degenerative disc disease, and (3) methods to treat segmental instability.
We performed a nonsystematic review using the keywords “cervical spine surgery” and “history” and “instrumentation” and “fusion” in combination with “anterior approach” and “posterior approach,” with no limit regarding the year of publication. Used databases were PubMed and Google Scholar. In addition, the search was extended by screening the reference list of all articles.
Innovative surgical approaches allowed direct access to symptomatic areas of the cervical spine. Over the years, we observed a trend from posterior to anterior surgical techniques. Management of the degenerative spine has evolved from decompressive surgery alone to the direct removal of the cause of neural impingement. Internal fixation of actual or potential spinal instability and the associated instrumentation have continuously evolved to allow more reliable fusion. More recently, surgeons have developed the basis for nonfusion surgical techniques and implants.
The most important advances appear to be (1) recognition of the need to directly address the causes of symptoms, (2) proper decompression of neural structures, and (3) more reliable fusion of unstable symptomatic segments.