Traumatic diaphragmatic rupture: look to see

Turhan, Kutsal; Makay, Ozer; Cakan, Alpaslan; Samancilar, Ozgur; Firat, Ozgur; Icoz, Gokhan; Cagirici, Ufuk
June 2008
European Journal of Cardio-Thoracic Surgery;Jun2008, Vol. 33 Issue 6, p1082
Academic Journal
Abstract: Objective: Traumatic diaphragmatic rupture (TDR) is a rare but potentially life threatening clinical entity with a high incidence of associated injuries. In this article, our experience with this challenging diagnosis is presented. Methods: In this study, a total of 68 patients with TDR, were operated in our center between July 1994 and September 2005. Study group was analyzed retrospectively. The etiological factors, management and outcomes were discussed. Results: The mean age was 32.9 years with a female to male ratio of 9/59. TDR was right-sided in 16.2% (n =11) and left-sided in 83.8% (n =57). The cause of the rupture was penetrating trauma in 51 (75%), and blunt trauma in 17 (25%). Only three patients (4.4%) had late diagnosis. Associated injuries were seen in 91% (n =62) of the patients. The most common used incision was a laparotomy incision (89.6%). Morbidity and mortality were encountered in 13.1% (n =9) and 16.2% (n =11) patients, respectively. Conclusions: Although rare, diaphragmatic rupture must be suspected in any patient with thoracoabdominal injury. Early diagnosis of TDR is sometimes difficult and depends on a high index of suspicion. Surgical repair is necessary even for small tears. The most common approach is the transabdominal approach, which allows a complete exploration of the abdominal organs for associated injuries. The transthoracic approach might be used in most cases with latent diaphragmatic rupture.


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