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February 15, 1965

Traumatic Cervical Syndrome and Whiplash

JAMA. 1965;191(7):606. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03080070090036

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To say, as Judge Blumenfeld does in the preface, that the authors "tell the layman what they have done... in terms that are intelligible" is stretching a point, for this is not a book for laymen. Indeed, it is not clear who will benefit from reading it. The sequences are illogical, terms are poorly defined, and opinions often without basis. For example, the authors "are convinced that they [Luschka joints] are frequently affected in the cervical syndrome, although proof is lacking." Nomenclature is sloppy. Thus, the writer declares that "strains and sprains are poor terms, ambivalent and never specific in meaning." Nevertheless, these terms are used in insurance statistics and differentiated from "whiplash."

Organization is poor. The chapter on anatomy (two thirds of the way through the book) includes the four scalenii [sic] and a drawing of the brachial plexus which bears no resemblance to another drawing 40 pages earlier.

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