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Cervical Spine Xrays

 A/P View,                       Lateral,

Open Mouth (Odontoid),



A/P View

  • Demonstrates: C3-C7 vertebral bodies and disc spaces.
  • Helpful for: Cervical spine trauma,

Position: supine or erect with back against casette

Beam directed 15° cephalad directed at C4/thyroid cartilage.


Odontoid / Open Mouth View

Position: supine with head centered on cassette at the level of the axis and mouth opened as side as possible.°

Beam directed at the midpoint of the open mouth perpendicular to the cassette



Lateral CSpne

  • Demonstrates: All seven cervical vertebrae and 1/3 of T1,
  • Atlanto-dens interval (ADI): normal - 3mm in adults. >3mm may indicate transverse, alar, and/or accessory ligament injury.
  • Helpful for: cervical spine trauma,

Position: Erect or supine with cassette on opposite side, shoulders depressed, neck slightly extended.

Beam directed horizontal, perpendicular to plate aimed at C4.




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