JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Multidetector CT in shoulder fractures.

Emergency Radiology 2004 December
The aim of this study was to assess the multi-detector computed tomography (MDCT) findings in acute shoulder traumas compared to radiographic findings in patients referred to a level one trauma center. Two hundred and ten patients (128 male, 82 female, age 16-95 years, mean age 51.7 years) underwent shoulder MDCT due to acute trauma. Three main mechanisms of injury were established: falling (113 patients, 54%), traffic accidents (36 patients, 17%) and falling from a height (12 patients, 6%). Based on MDCT, a total of 311 fractures--152 in the scapula and 159 in the proximal humerus--occurred in 191 (91%) of the 210 patients. The two most common occult fractures were lesser tubercle and coracoid process fractures. In 20 (63%) of the patients with a comminuted fracture of proximal humerus the exact number of fracture fragments was underestimated in radiographs. MDCT with multiplanar reconstructions (MPR) is a recommended complementary examination in patients with complex proximal humerus fractures where the extent of the fractures and the position or origin of dislocated fragments is not clear on radiography. This may increase the accuracy of the fracture classification and reveal occult fractures in other parts of the shoulder.

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