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Craniovertebral junction abnormalities in down syndrome

by Todd C. Hankinson, Richard C E Anderson
Neurosurgery ()

Abstract

Children with Down syndrome may have occipitocervical and atlantoaxial instability. To prevent neurologic injury during athletic competitions, such as the Special Olympics, radiographic cervical spine screening was established in 1983 as a prerequisite for participation in some events. This review discusses the biomechanics underlying upper cervical instability in children with Down syndrome, the evolution of cervical spine screening protocols, and current opinion regarding management for children with Down syndrome and upper cervical instability.

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