Maximum movement and cumulative movement (travel) to inform our understanding of secondary spinal cord injury and its application to collar use in self-extrication

Tim Nutbeam, Rob Fenwick, Barbara May, Willem Stassen, Jason Smith, James Shippen

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    5 Citations (Scopus)
    49 Downloads (Pure)

    Abstract

    Background: Motor vehicle collisions remain a common cause of spinal cord injury. Biomechanical studies of spinal movement often lack “real world” context and applicability. Additional data may enhance our understanding of the potential for secondary spinal cord injury. We propose the metric ‘travel’ (total movement) and suggest that our understanding of movement related risk of injury could be improved if travel was routinely reported. We report maximal movement and travel for collar application in vehicle and subsequent self-extrication. Methods: Biomechanical data on application of cervical collar with the volunteer sat in a vehicle were collected using Inertial Measurement Units on 6 healthy volunteers. Maximal movement and travel are reported. These data and a re-analysis of previously published work is used to demonstrate the utility of travel and maximal movement in the context of self-extrication. Results: Data from a total of 60 in-vehicle collar applications across three female and three male volunteers was successfully collected for analysis. The mean age across participants was 50.3 years (range 28–68) and the BMI was 27.7 (range 21.5–34.6). The mean maximal anterior–posterior movement associated with collar application was 2.3 mm with a total AP travel of 4.9 mm. Travel (total movement) for in-car application of collar and self-extrication was 9.5 mm compared to 9.4 mm travel for self-extrication without a collar. Conclusion: We have demonstrated the application of ‘travel’ in the context of self-extrication. Total travel is similar across self-extricating healthy volunteers with and without a collar. We suggest that where possible ‘travel’ is collected and reported in future biomechanical studies in this and related areas of research. It remains appropriate to apply a cervical collar to self-extricating casualties when the clinical target is that of movement minimisation.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number4
    JournalScandinavian Journal of Trauma, Resuscitation and Emergency Medicine
    Volume30
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2022

    Bibliographical note

    Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated in a credit line to the data.

    Funder

    Funding Information:
    This work is kindly supported by the National Fire Chiefs Council, Avon Fire and Rescue Service and Severn Park Fire and Rescue Centre.

    Funding Information:
    Research funded by a charitable grant from the Road Safety Trust. The Road Safety Trust had no role in the design, data collection, analysis or writing of this manuscript.

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Emergency Medicine
    • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine

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