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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 8(2); 1997 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 1997;8(2): 228-233.
Abdominal Trauma with Rib Fractures; What is the level of rib fractures we must evaluate intra-abdominal injuries?
Joon Seok Park, Sang Moon Park, Seok Cheon Hyun, Myung Hee Kang, Kab Deuk Kim, Wha Shik Song
ABSTRACT
Many authors have been reported that the abdominal trauma, especially injury of the liver and spleen, is frequently found with lower rib fractures, below the ninth rib fractures and the incidence was about 20 to 30%. In cases of rib fractures, Intra- abdominal organs may be injured in the higher rib fractures than the ninth because the diaphragm is elevated at the level of filth intercostal space in expiration period and the intra-abdominal lesions are often delayed evaluated due to the pain of the fractures and masked by the other injuries of the head and the extremities. So above reasons, we were often questioned what the level of rib fracture we must evaluate the intra-abdominal injury was? So we investigated 452 patients with rib fractures who visited our emergency medical center from 1995, January to 1996, December and divided into two groups according to the prescience of intra-abdominal organ injuries by each the level of rib fractures. The number of patients with intra-abdominal organ injuries were 75(16.6%) and the most frequently damaged organ was the liver(25 cases, 33.3%). We calculated the statistical values of each level of rib fractures by the Chi-Square method and got a result that the level of rib fracture we must evaluate the intra-abdominal injuries was the sixth rib fracture. Therefore, if we will meet the patients with rib fracture below the sixth, we must have attentions to the intra-abdominal injuries and evaluate the abdomen closely with various diagnostic methods.
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