Traumatic spinal injuries in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: a study of associated injuries, management and mortality
Introduction: traumatic spinal fracture is a painful and disabling injury associated with poor long-term functional outcome. The objective of the present study was to assess the frequency of spinal fractures in road traffic accident (RTA) victims, their management, mortality rate and associated injuries. This study reveals and adds useful insights to the literature from Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) in terms of incidence of RTA-related spinal fractures, including their management and mortality rate.
Methods: a cross-sectional study was conducted at King Khalid Hospital and Prince Sultan Center for Health Services (KKH & PSCHS) in AlKharj, KSA from September 2016 to June 2017. A total of 120 patients suffering from spinal/vertebral fractures due to RTAs were included in this study. The data was collected from patients' charts, including age, gender, region or distribution of the spinal fracture, associated fractures, number of fractures, degrees of shock, admission to intensive care unit (ICU), treatment modalities, along with the management of spinal fractures, days of hospital stay, referral and discharges or deaths.
Results: the mean age of patients was 29.21. The most common anatomic region of the fracture was the cervical region (35%). Injuries associated with traumatic spinal fracture were predominated by clavicular fractures. More than half of the victims (58.30%) had a cervical brace applied before leaving the hospital. 29.20% patients required posterior stabilization with pedicle screws. Anterior corpectomy, grafting and plating was done to 4.30% patients.
Conclusion: traumatic spinal fractures require prompt diagnosis and timely management in order to improve the outcome.