Purpose: Radiation doses have been monitored for a long time, as we are aware that radiation can produce biological effects. However, there is a limited amount of information available on patient dose from cervical spine examinations. In addition, the techniques used are variable between radiographic departments and even radiographers within one department. The difference in technique of particular concern is the use of radiographic grids. While it reduces scatter and improve image quality, the use of a grid demands increased exposure factors and dose to obtain the same optical density on the film. Method: This study investigated the range of doses for lateral cervical spine examinations in the Hunter and Sydney metropolitan regions of New South Wales, Australia. Radiation doses were calculated from X-ray tube output measurements and patient exposure parameters. Results: Differences in dose for 116 patients (53 non-grid, 63 grid) examined on 13 X-ray units were analysed. The study calculated the mean entrance surface dose for the non-grid system (228 μGy) to be significantly lower at the 95% significance level than the mean entrance surface dose for the grid techniques (505 μGy). However, the use of a grid for computed radiography systems did not produce any differences in dose with the use or non-use of a grid, while there was a three-fold increase for film-screen systems. Conclusion: The increased level of dose and the inherent air-gap nature of the lateral cervical spine examination raises severe doubt on the use of anti-scatter grids and the recommendation is that they should not be used.