Abstract 13- 1415-1430
Category: Clinical

At the end of the session, participants will be able to:

  1. Understand the Connection between Blunt Head Trauma and Neck Injuries in Infants
  2. Evaluate Traditional and Advanced Spine Examination Techniques
  3. Comprehend the Limitations of Conventional Examination Methods

COI Disclosure:

Conflict of Interest: I have a relationship with a for-profit and/or a not-for-profit organization to disclose. Indicate the organization(s) with which you have/had a relationship over the previous two years and briefly describe the nature of that relationship.

Name of for-profit or not-for-profit organization(s) :

NAAG Forensic PC

Description of relationship(s) : I, Dr. Evan Matshes, as the Medical Director of NAAG Forensic PC, affirm that I do not perceive my role as presenting a conflict in relation to the content of my presentation. My actions are grounded in professional ethics, free from external influences, and prioritize the best interests of relevant parties. I remain dedicated to transparency and uphold the highest standards of professional integrity.


Dr. Evan William Matshes is a board certified anatomic and forensic pathologist licensed to practice medicine in the State of California. He is employed at NAAG FORENSIC PC where he is Medical Director. He serves as Chief Forensic Pathologist for multiple statutorily appointed agencies in the State of California. He is an administrator with an active general and pediatric forensic pathology practice. He also provides independent reviews and consultation services for complex injury and death cases for death investigative agencies, law enforcement, the military, and justice professionals worldwide.
His educational background and qualifications include: an undergraduate degree (BSc) in Human Anatomy and Cell Biology from the University of Saskatchewan, and a Medical Doctorate (MD) also from the University of Saskatchewan (Canada). Dr. Matshes holds specialty certification in Anatomic Pathology as a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (FRCPC) by examination, and from the American Board of Pathology (Fellow in the College of American Pathologists; FCAP) by examination. Dr. Matshes also holds specialty certification in Forensic Pathology as a Diplomate of the American Board of Pathology (D-ABP) by examination. Dr. Matshes was selected as the 2007 Harvard Medical School Visiting Scholar in Pediatric Pathology, and trained at the Boston Children’s Hospital. During the final year of his Anatomic Pathology training, Dr. Matshes undertook a nine-month research fellowship in Pediatric Forensic Pathology with the Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner Department.


Evan W. Matshes1

1NAAG Forensic PC, San Diego, California, USA

    Target Audience:

    Pathologists, Residents, Medical Students

    Medical Expert (the integrating role), Collaborator, Health Advocate

    Blunt truths: Innovations in identifying neck injuries from infant head trauma.


    Radiologic and pathological evidence, supported by case practice, reveal that blunt head trauma in infants often concurrently injure neck structures. Initial studies suggested that shearing forces might compromise cervical nerves, particularly at the dorsal root ganglia. Subsequent publications, however, shed light on possible harm to other vulnerable anatomical structures, such as hemorrhaging or swelling in the nuchal ligament, interspinal ligaments, and the junction between the anterior arch of C1 and the odontoid process. Conventional in situ spine examinations, with or without spinal cord removal, fail to detect these injuries. An enhanced ex situ cervical spine evaluation method, evolved from prior techniques, offers a comprehensive macro- and microscopic exploration of the infant’s internal neck anatomy. This advanced approach provides a deeper insight into potential injuries throughout the cervical soft tissues, chondro-osseous structures, and neuroanatomy. Adopting this method elevates the reliability of conclusions in the complex landscape of infant head and neck trauma research.

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