CT Scans in Primary Survey for Polytrauma Patients


Managing critically injured patients are challenging. Victims of major trauma often present with a host of unknowns including the exact site and nature of injury with a need for urgent diagnosis and resuscitation. It takes significant clinical expertise to detect multiple injuries and implement life or limb saving treatment within a short period of time. Conventional radiographs and focused assessment with sonography for trauma (FAST) scans are useful adjuncts to help in initial diagnosis. Conventional computer tomography (CT) investigations have been used for secondary survey in these scenarios. We reviewed the guidelines that regulate the use of CT scans in multiple injured patients in the UK. CT imaging is rapidly emerging as an adjunct to primary survey. It allows quick detection of major organ injury allowing focussed treatment whilst simultaneous initial resuscitation is underway. Availability of adequate resources is needed for widespread adaptation of this technique that involves manpower, relocation and refurbishment of the CT suites. Although it is not yet clear if using CT imaging during primary survey reduces mortality, it surely results in more organised patient care and efficient use of resources in an acute setting.

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Banerjee, P. , Rudra, S. , Ghosh, M. and Panose, P. (2013) CT Scans in Primary Survey for Polytrauma Patients. Advances in Computed Tomography, 2, 46-51. doi: 10.4236/act.2013.22009.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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