Journal of Emergencies, Trauma, and Shock
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Year : 2018  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 25-30

Computed Tomography Profile and its Utilization in Head Injury Patients in Emergency Department: A Prospective Observational Study

1 Department of Emergency Medicine and Trauma, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India
2 Department of Neurosurgery, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India
3 Department of Biometrics and Informatics (Biostatistics), Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Puducherry, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Archana Waganekar
Department of Emergency Medicine and Trauma, E-37, Jawaharlal Institute of Postgraduate Medical Education and Research, Staff Quarters, Dhanvantari Nagar, Puducherry - 605 006
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JETS.JETS_112_17

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Context: Based on Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS), head injury can be classified as minor (GCS 13–15), moderate (GCS 9–12), and severe (GCS 3–8). There is a lot of controversy in the use of computed tomography (CT) in head injury patients. Aims: This study was intended to estimate the rate of CT positivity in head injury patients and to define the criteria for doing CT in head injury patients. Settings and Design: This was a prospective observational study in the emergency department (ED) over a 12-month period. Subjects and Methods: Study involved all head injury patients attending ED. Risk factors studied were a loss of consciousness (LOC), vomiting, seizures, ear bleed, nosebleed, external injuries, and alcohol intoxication. Statistical Analysis Used: Comparison of CT positivity with the patient's demographics and clinical characteristics was carried out using Chi-square. Results: A total of 1782 patients were included in this study. Overall CT positivity was 50.9%. In minor head injury (MHI), CT positivity rate was 38%. The study showed significant association of CT positivity with five variables: LOC >5 min, vomiting, seizures, ear bleed, and nosebleed. Conclusions: From the study, we recommend following: CT is indicated in all patients with moderate and severe head injury (GCS ≤12). Low threshold for taking CT is advisable in elderly and alcohol-intoxicated patients. In MHI, CT is indicated if any one of the following risk factors are present: LOC >5 min, history of vomiting, history of seizures, history of ear bleed, and history of nosebleed.

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