Cervical spine injury, hockey helmets, and face masks

Am J Sports Med. Mar-Apr 1994;22(2):167-70. doi: 10.1177/036354659402200203.


Over the past 30 years hockey players began wearing helmets and face masks. Cervical spine injury, with an incidence of 15 cases per year, began to be reported in the 1980s. Cervical spine trauma had not been reported before then. After review of the literature, there seems to be a consensus of opinion that the style of play that is allowed a player with head protection may actually increase the chances of cervical spinal trauma.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cervical Vertebrae / injuries*
  • Head Protective Devices / adverse effects*
  • Hockey / injuries*
  • Humans
  • Masks / adverse effects*