We're unable to sign you in at this time. Please try again in a few minutes.
We were able to sign you in, but your subscription(s) could not be found. Please try again in a few minutes.
There may be a problem with your account. Please contact the AMA Service Center to resolve this issue.
Contact the AMA Service Center:
Telephone: 1 (800) 262-2350 or 1 (312) 670-7827  *   Email: subscriptions@jamanetwork.com
Error Message ......
Article |

Computed Tomography in Blunt Hepatic Trauma

Kimberly A. Davis, MD; Jeffrey M. Brody, MD; William G. Cioffi, MD
Arch Surg. 1996;131(3):255-260. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1996.01430150033005.
Text Size: A A A
Published online


Background:  Nonoperative management of blunt hepatic injury in hemodynamically stable trauma patients is now common. Recently, it has been proposed that the finding of hepatic periportal tracking (PPT) of blood on the initial computed tomographic (CT) scan is a sensitive marker of significant hepatic and subhepatic injury that might militate against nonoperative management. While CT scan is useful in diagnosing the injury, the utility of follow-up CT scans has not been elucidated.

Design:  Retrospective chart review.

Setting:  Regional trauma center.

Patients:  The records of 58 hemodynamically stable patients with blunt hepatic trauma were reviewed and the following data recorded: age, outcome, Injury Severity Score (ISS), operative intervention, and complications. Computed tomographic scans were taken on admission and reviewed for the presence of PPT. The timing and radiographic appearance of follow-up CT scans was also recorded.

Results:  Seventeen patients (29%) had radiographic evidence of PPT while 41 patients (71%) did not. Age, ISS, injury grade, overall success rate of nonoperative management, and incidence of complications were not statistically significant between the two groups. In no instance did a routine follow-up CT scan affect subsequent management of the patient.

Conclusions:  The finding of PPT on the admission CT scan is not clinically significant and does not preclude nonoperative management of patients with blunt hepatic injury. Furthermore, routine follow-up CT scans are not indicated, as treatment is not influenced by their results. Rather, follow-up CT scans should be obtained as dictated by the patient's clinical course. Extrapolation of these findings to all patients with blunt hepatic trauma in the United States would result in considerable savings of health care dollars, without negatively affecting patient care.(Arch Surg. 1996;131:255-260)


Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?





Also Meets CME requirements for:
Browse CME for all U.S. States
Accreditation Information
The American Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. The AMA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM per course. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. Physicians who complete the CME course and score at least 80% correct on the quiz are eligible for AMA PRA Category 1 CreditTM.
Note: You must get at least of the answers correct to pass this quiz.
Please click the checkbox indicating that you have read the full article in order to submit your answers.
Your answers have been saved for later.
You have not filled in all the answers to complete this quiz
The following questions were not answered:
Sorry, you have unsuccessfully completed this CME quiz with a score of
The following questions were not answered correctly:
Commitment to Change (optional):
Indicate what change(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.
Your quiz results:
The filled radio buttons indicate your responses. The preferred responses are highlighted
For CME Course: A Proposed Model for Initial Assessment and Management of Acute Heart Failure Syndromes
Indicate what changes(s) you will implement in your practice, if any, based on this CME course.


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

0 Citations

Sign in

Purchase Options

• Buy this article
• Subscribe to the journal
• Rent this article ?

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.