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Emergency Medicine International
Volume 2011, Article ID 848013, 6 pages
Research Article

Blunt Cardiac Injury in Trauma Patients with Thoracic Aortic Injury

1Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, 55 Fruit Street, FND-210, Boston, MA 02114, USA
2Department of Radiology, Ramathibodi Hospital and Mahidol University, 270 Rama VI Road, Ratchatewi, Bangkok 10400, Thailand
3Department of Surgery, Massachusetts General Hospital, 55 Fruit Street, FND-210, Boston, MA 02114, USA
4Departamento de Cirurgia Geral, Hospital Geral de Santo António, Largo do Prof. Abel Salazar, 4099-001 Porto, Portugal

Received 27 February 2011; Accepted 10 May 2011

Academic Editor: Aristomenis K. Exadaktylos

Copyright © 2011 Rathachai Kaewlai et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Trauma patients with thoracic aortic injury (TAI) suffer blunt cardiac injury (BCI) at variable frequencies. This investigation aimed to determine the frequency of BCI in trauma patients with TAI and compare with those without TAI. All trauma patients with TAI who had admission electrocardiography (ECG) and serum creatine kinase-MB (CK-MB) from January 1999 to May 2009 were included as a study group at a level I trauma center. BCI was diagnosed if there was a positive ECG with either an elevated CK-MB or abnormal echocardiography. There were 26 patients (19 men, mean age 45.1 years, mean ISS 34.4) in the study group; 20 had evidence of BCI. Of 52 patients in the control group (38 men, mean age 46.9 years, mean ISS 38.7), eighteen had evidence of BCI. There was a significantly higher rate of BCI in trauma patients with TAI versus those without TAI (77% versus 35%, ).