evere Chest Trauma in Jos, Nigeria: Pattern and Outcome of Management

  • M A Misauno
  • A Z Sule
  • H C Nwadiaro
  • K N Ozoilo
  • A L Akwaras
  • B T Ugwu


Background: Chest trauma is a significant cause of mortality and morbidity world over especially among young productive members of the society. Prompt recognition and early intervention is the key to successful management. Setting: Jos University Teaching Hospital Jos in the middle belt of Nigeria. Objective: To evaluate the pattern and management outcome of chest trauma and to audit existing practice. Patients and Methods: This was a prospective study of all consecutive patients presenting with chest trauma at the accident and emergency department between January 1999 and December 2005 requiring resuscitation, admission and observation. Results: One hundred and ninety eight patients were studied. Their ages ranged from 6 years to 70 years with a mean age of 34 years. There were 165 males and 33 females giving a male to female ratio (M: F) of 5:1. Road traffic accident (RTA) was the most common aetiology accounting for 70.7% of cases. Blunt chest injury resulted in 72.2% of the cases while penetrating injury was encountered in 27.8% of the cases. Chest wall contusion was the most common clinical pattern of injury and accounted for 24.4% of the injuries. Drivers of vehicles involved in RTA were most commonly affected by chest trauma and accounted for 26.7% cases. Eighty two patients had associated injuries. Extremity fractures were the most commonly associated injury and were found in 38 patients (33.3%). A mortality of 4.5% was recorded. Conclusion: Significant mortality occurs following chest trauma which is a common occurrence in young active members of the society. Drivers often suffer this injury following road traffic accidents due to their occupational exposure. Chest trauma could be adequately managed through early detection and prompt intervention.

Keywords: Chest trauma, pattern, early detection, prompt intervention

Nigerian Journal of Orthopaedics and Trauma Vol. 6 (2) 2007: pp. 64-66

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eISSN: 1596-4582