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Chin J Traumatol. 2013;16(6):351-4.

Accuracy of chest radiography versus chest computed tomography in hemodynamically stable patients with blunt chest trauma.

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Emergency Medicine, Sina Hospital, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran 11365-3876, Iran.



Thoracic injuries are responsible for 25% of deaths of blunt traumas. Chest X-ray (CXR) is the first diagnostic method in patients with blunt trauma. The aim of this study was to detect the accuracy of CXR versus chest computed tomograpgy (CT) in hemodynamically stable patients with blunt chest trauma.


Study was conducted at the emergency department of Sina Hospital from March 2011 to March 2012. Hemodynamically stable patients with at least 16 years of age who had blunt chest trauma were included. All patients underwent the same diagnostic protocol which consisted of physical examination, CXR and CT scan respectively.


Two hundreds patients (84% male and 16% female) were included with a mean age of (37.9+/-13.7) years. Rib fracture was the most common finding of CXR (12.5%) and CT scan (25.5%). The sensitivity of CXR for hemothorax, thoracolumbar vertebra fractures and rib fractures were 20%, 49% and 49%, respectively. Pneumothorax, foreign body, emphysema, pulmonary contusion, liver hematoma and sternum fracture were not diagnosed with CXR alone.


Applying CT scan as the first-line diagnostic modality in hemodynamically stable patients with blunt chest trauma can detect pathologies which may change management and outcome.

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