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Blunt renal trauma: comparison of contrast-enhanced CT and angiographic findings and the usefulness of transcatheter arterial embolization.

BACKGROUND: The purpose of this study was to evaluate the role of contrast-enhanced CT and the usefulness of superselective embolization therapy in the management of arterial damage in patients with severe blunt renal trauma.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: Nine cases of severe renal trauma were evaluated. In all cases, we compared contrast-enhanced CT findings with angiographic findings, and performed transcatheter arterial embolization (TAE) in six of them with microcoils and gelatin sponge particles. Morphological changes in the kidney and site of infarction after TAE were evaluated on follow-up CT Chronological changes in blood biochemistry findings after injury, degree of anemia and renal function were investigated. Adverse effects or complications such as duration of hematuria, fever, abdominal pain, renovascular hypertension and abscess formation were also evaluated.

RESULTS: The CT finding of extravasation was a reliable sign of active bleeding and useful for determining the indication of TAE. In all cases, bleeding was effectively controlled with superselective embolization. There was minimal procedure-related loss of renal tissue. None of the patients developed abscess, hypertension or other complications.

CONCLUSIONS: In blunt renal injury, contrast-enhanced CT was useful for diagnosing arterial hemorrhage. Arterial bleeding may produce massive hematoma and TAE was a useful treatment for such cases. By using selective TAE for a bleeding artery, it was possible to minimize renal parenchymal damage, with complications of TAE rarely seen.

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