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Injury. 2004 Mar;35(3):228-31.

Gastric rupture from blunt abdominal trauma.

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Unit of Multisystem Trauma, Department of Intensive Medicine, Marqués de Valdecilla Hospital of Santander, Cantabria, Spain.


Gastric rupture following blunt abdominal trauma is rare, with a reported incidence of 0.02-1.7%. Road traffic accidents remain the most frequent cause. The factors most often implicated in the genesis of this entity are: a history of a recent meal, trauma to the left side of the body and an inappropriate use of seat belts. Splenic injury is generally the most common associated injury. The high morbidity and mortality are directly related to the number of associated injuries, delays in diagnosis and the development of intraabdominal sepsis. We performed a retrospective study of 1300 patients with blunt trauma to the abdomen from 1973 to 2001. Seven patients sustained a gastric rupture (five men and two women). The following associated characteristics were analysed: mechanism of injury, clinical presentation, possible associated injuries and postoperative complications, diagnosis methods and surgical treatment. We found an incidence of gastric rupture of 0.5%. We emphasise an early diagnosis and aggressive surgical treatment as a key to decreasing the mortality and morbidity from this injury. However, in our series, the morbidity is mainly from associated injuries.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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