Non-operative management of blunt liver trauma in a level II trauma hospital in Saudi Arabia

Ghnnam, Wagih Mommtaz; Almasry, Hosam Nabil; El-Fatah Ghanem, Mona Abd
April 2013
International Journal of Critical Illness & Injury Science;Apr-Jun2013, Vol. 3 Issue 2, p118
Academic Journal
Background: To evaluate our experience with non-operative management of blunt livertrauma at a level II trauma hospital in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Materials and Methods: We prospectively evaluated 56 patients treated for blunt liver trauma at our hospital over a 4-year period (April 2008 to April 2012). Patients who were hemodynamically stable [non-operative group I (NOP)] were treated conservatively in the intensive or intermediate care unit (ICU or IMCU). Patients who were hemodynamically unstable or needed laparotomy for other injuries were treated by urgent laparotomy [operative group II (OP)]. All NOP group patients had computed tomography (CT) of the abdomen with oral and intravenous contrast. Injuries grades were classified according to the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma (AAST).Follow-up CT of the abdomen was performed after 2 weeks in some cases. Results: A total of 56 patients were treated over a 4-year period. Twenty patients (35.7%)were treated by immediate surgery. NOP group of 36 patients (64.3%) were managed in the ICU by close monitoring. Surgically treated group had more patients with complex liver injury (90% versus 58.3%), required more units of blood (6.05 versus 1.5), but had a longer hospital stay (16.6 days versus 15.1 days). None of the patients from the non-operated group developed complications nor did they need operation. The only mortality (in twopatients) was in the operated group. Conclusion: The NOP treatment is a safe and effective method in the management of hemodynamically stable patients with blunt liver trauma. The NOP treatment should be the treatment of choice in such patients whenever CT and ICU facilities are available.


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