Surgical Treatment for Thoracic Injuries - One Clinic's Experience
The aim of the study was to present one clinic's experience in the treatment of thoracic injuries. Particular attention was paid to the methods for treatment of patients after thoracic injuries.
Material and methods. During the years 1996-2006, 273 patients with thoracic injuries were hospitalized in the clinic; 0.9% of all patients treated during this time. There were 66 women (24.2%) and 207 men (75.8%), aged 17 to 85 years (average: 34.9).
Results. Among all of the thoracic injuries analyzed, the most common was traffic accidents, which made up 111 (40.7%) cases. Next, accidents of violence made up 87 (31.9%) cases, and accidental falls and falls from heights 62 (22.7%) cases. Rare were self-mutilations, crash traumas and gunshot traumas. Isolated injury was observed in 107 cases, and 166 (60.8%) patients had multifocal trauma and multi-organ injuries. 50 patients (18.3%) had acute, penetrating injuries, and 223 patients (81.7%) had blunt thoracic injuries. During hospitalization, other traumas were diagnosed: rib fractures in 107 cases (39.2%), pleurohematoma in 37 cases (13.6%), pneumothorax in 36 cases (13.2%), pneumohemothorax in 26 cases (9.5%), lung contusion in 43 cases (15.8%), posttraumatic aorta aneurysm in 31 cases (11.4%), and contusion of the heart or great vessels in 8 cases (2.9%).
The applied treatment was: pleural cavity drainage in 86 cases (27.8%), immediate thoracotomy in 24 cases (8.8%), laparotomy in 23 cases (8.4%), stent-graft implantation in posttraumatic aneurysms in 30 cases (11%), and other specialized operations in 46 cases (16.9%). Qualified surgical treatment was performed in 176 cases (64.5%) out of 273. Multispecialized treatment was used in 46 cases (16.8%). 16 patients died (5.9%), most directly after admission to the hospital.
Conclusions. 1. Over 30% of patients need no surgical treatment after thoracic trauma. 2. The most common coexisting injuries with thoracic trauma are cranio-cerebral injuries and bone fractures. 3. The main cause of death is oligovolemic shock due to heart and great vessels contusion.