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Kassirer Marilyn R. M.D.; Manon, Naomi
The Clinical Journal of Pain: June 1993
Case Report: PDF Only

Objective:

The current trend in dancing includes “head banging” with extreme flexion, extension, and rotation of the head and cervical spine. We suggest that dance-related severe pain in the cervical area may result from head banging.

Design:

A cohort of 37 eighth graders ages 13 or 14 participated in a dance marathon for charity lasting 7 h.There were 26 girls and 11 boys.

Setting:

During the dance marathon, three “heavy metal” songs were played during which head banging could be done.

Patients:

The painful syndromes that relate to head banging were evaluated by a convenience sample of the 37 marathon dancers in the eight grade.

Main Outcome Measures:

A self-selected age-matched control group is included since 17 adolescents participated in head banging and 20 did not.

Results:

Of the head bangers, 81.82% of the girls and 16.6% of the boys had resultant cervical spine pain that lasted 1–3 days. Only 26.2% of non-head-banging girls and 0% of non-head-banging boys had cervical spine pain lasting 1–3 days. Of all the 8th-grade participants, 62.16% had pain somewhere. Other types of pain included leg pain, back pain, and headache. Only three adolescents took any medication for their pain.

Conclusion:

The head-banger's whiplash is a self-limiting painful disorder. The easy resolution of the pain problem in adolescents is a tribute to the resilience of youth.

© Lippincott-Raven Publishers.