Pattern of abdominal free fluid following isolated blunt spleen or liver injury in the pediatric patient

Michael L. Nance, Soroosh Mahboubi, Maj Wickstrom, Frank Prendergast, Perry W. Stafford

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study correlated isolated, blunt liver or spleen injury with the presence, location, and amount of free fluid in the pediatric blunt trauma patient. The hospital trauma registry was reviewed for the period 1/89 to 12/99 for pediatric patients (age ≤ 17 years) who sustained blunt, isolated spleen or liver injury and had an abdominal CT scan. Patients with other intraabdominal injuries or inadequate scans were excluded. CT scans were reviewed by two radiologists and the isolated liver or spleen injury confirmed and graded. The presence, location, and amount of free fluid were evaluated in the RUQ, LUQ, and pelvis. Free fluid was quantified as 0 = no fluid, 1 = small amount, 2 = moderate, and 3 = large for each area. There were 134 pediatric patients with an isolated spleen (n = 66) or liver (n = 68) injury. Free fluid was noted in 101 patients (75%), more commonly with spleen (82%) than with liver (69%) injuries. As injury grade increased, so did frequency of patients with free fluid (grade 1 = 50% to grade 5 = 100%) and mean total volume (sum of fluid scores from each region) of free fluid (grade 1 = 0.75 to grade 5 = 6.5). The mean total volume of free fluid was greater for splenic injury (3.1) than for liver injury (1.7). The pelvis was the most common location for free fluid (liver 53%, spleen 71%) and had the greatest mean volume of free fluid (liver 0.9, spleen 1.5) of any single region. There is a direct correlation between the severity of the isolated injury and the likelihood and volume of associated free fluid. The pelvis was the most common location to detect free fluid and had the greatest estimated fluid volume.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)85-87
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Trauma
Volume52
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2002

Keywords

  • Blunt trauma
  • Computed tomography
  • Free fluid
  • Liver injury
  • Pediatric
  • Spleen injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
  • Surgery

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