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December 14, 1940


Author Affiliations


From the Orthopaedic Clinic of the Children's Hospital.

JAMA. 1940;115(24):2063-2069. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.02810500031009

Spontaneous reduction of a dislocation of the cervical spine is the restitution of normal relationship between articular facets by permitting active rotations of the head while it functions as the distraction force.

ANATOMY  The alinedposition of the cervical vertebrae is controlled by the opposing articular facets. If there is an abnormal distortion or loss of apposition between the articular facets a dislocation of the cervical vertebra prevails. The articular facets of the cervical spine are sliding joints. These are bound by an articular capsule and are supported by the ligaments of the cervical spine.In the first cervical vertebra the facets are lateral masses which are joined anteriorly by a narrow arc of bone, the arcus anterior, and posteriorly by a similar but longer arc, the arcus posterior.1 The lateral masses superiorly rest against the occipital condyles of the skull. Below they articulate with the two superior articular facets