Chest radiography in major trauma

Author(s): Dr Maryann Hardy

Hospital: University of Bradford

Reference: RAD Magazine, 44, 514, 21-22


Major trauma is commonly defined as serious or multiple injuries where there is a strong possibility of death or disability. For the purpose of quantification, volume analysis, international comparison and research, major trauma is often defined as an Injury Severity Score (ISS) greater than or equal to 16. In 2010, the National Audit Office estimated that 20,000 cases of major trauma occurred in England each year with almost one third of these resulting in death and many more in permanent disability requiring long-term care. Consequently, major trauma forms only a minor element of the work undertaken in emergency departments (less than 0.2% activity) but the associated economic costs are high, with the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) stating that every trauma death costs the nation £0.75 million and each major injury costs £50,000.

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