Clearing the cervical spine is among the highest priorities in the early assessment of trauma patients in emergency centers. Annually, more than ten million patients present to trauma centers in the USA, and in all of these patients, the possibility of cervical spine injury must be considered [34, 43, 60]. However, the actual incidence of cervical spine injury among blunt trauma patients is only 1-3% [77, 80, 81, 96]. Therefore, the need for a concise, yet thorough, approach to cervical spine clearance mandates that efficacious clearing guidelines are established and adhered to.
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