Clinical analysis of the utility of repeat computed tomographic scan before discharge in blunt hepatic injury

David L. Ciraulo, Heikki E. Nikkanen, Marc Palter, Stuart Markowitz, Sheryl Gabram, Vemon Cowell, Stephen Luk, Lenworth Jacobs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Objectives: Nonoperative management of hemodynamically stable blunt hepatic injury has emerged as an acceptable and safe treatment. Surveillance of this population's injuries is costly. As a prelude to establishing practice guidelines, the utility of repeat computed tomographic (CT) scans was investigated. Methods: A retrospective study was conducted on 243 hepatic injuries. The CT scans of 95 patients managed nonoperatively who did not have ongoing transfusion requirements were reviewed and graded according to the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma (AAST) hepatic injury scale. Patients were grouped according to injury grade, assigned to two subgroups (patients with one CT scan versus more than one CT scan) and compared with respect to several physiologic and clinical variables. Results: Statistical analysis revealed no significant difference between subgroups with the same grade of injury. No significant difference was demonstrated between subgroups' length of stay. Conclusions: No patients failed nonoperative treatment or succumbed to their injuries. Findings on repeat CT scan have not altered the decision to discharge the clinically stable patient having suffered a grade III or lower liver injury.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)821-824
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Trauma - Injury, Infection and Critical Care
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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