Utility of screening for blunt vascular neck injuries with computed tomographic angiography

Nathan P Schneidereit, Richard Simons, Savvas Nicolaou, Douglas Graeb, D Ross Brown, Andrew Kirkpatrick, Gary Redekop, Elaine C McKevitt, Amir Neyestani
Journal of Trauma 2006, 60 (1): 209-15; discussion 215-6

PURPOSE: To prospectively study the impact of implementing a computed tomographic angiography (CTA)-based screening protocol on the detected incidence and associated morbidity and mortality of blunt vascular neck injury (BVNI).

METHODS: Consecutive blunt trauma patients admitted to a single tertiary trauma center and identified as at risk for BVNI underwent admission CTA using an eight-slice multi-detector computed tomography scanner. The detected incidence, morbidity, and mortality rates of BVNI were compared with those measured before CTA screening. A logistic regression model was also applied to further evaluate potential risk factors for BVNI.

RESULTS: A total of 1,313 blunt trauma patients were evaluated. One hundred seventy screening CTAs were performed, of which 33 disclosed abnormalities. Twenty-three were evaluated angiographically, of which 15 were considered to have significant BVNIs, as were 4 of the 10 patients with abnormal CTAs and no angiogram. The incidence of angiographically proven BVNIs in our series was 1.1%. If four patients who were treated for BVNIs based on CTA alone are included, the incidence rises to 1.4%. This is significantly higher than the 0.17% incidence before screening (p < 0.001). In addition, the delayed stroke rate and injury-specific mortality fell significantly from 67% to 0% (p < 0.001) and 38% to 0% (p = 0.002), respectively. Overall mortality also fell significantly, from 38% to 10.5% (p = 0.049). Univariate logistic regression identified the presence of cervical spine injury as a significant predictor of BVNI (p < 0.001).

CONCLUSION: CTA screening increases the detected incidence of BVNI 8-fold, with rates similar to angiographically based screening protocols. CTA screening significantly decreases BVNI-related morbidity and mortality in an efficient manner, underlying its utility in the early diagnosis of this injury.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"