Thoracic trauma imaging

Author(s): Dr Colum O'Hare, Dr Chris Hay

Hospital: Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh

Reference: RAD Magazine, 43, 511, 11-12


It has been well documented that trauma is the most common cause of death in developed countries in those under the age of 45. In England, in 2013 this accounted for an estimated 5,400 deaths.

Chest trauma is the third most common type of injury in polytrauma patients, however it is the second most common cause of death after head trauma. The overall mortality associated with chest trauma is approximately 10%, with it being highest in the context of tracheobronchial-oesophageal injuries. Over 60% of blunt trauma in developed countries is due to motor vehicle collisions and in the UK the financial impact on the National Health Service due to all trauma is in excess of £4 billion per year.

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