Diagnostic value of a hand-carried ultrasound device for free intra-abdominal fluid and organ lacerations in major trauma patients

Emergency Medicine Journal, 04/25/2012

Schleder S et al. – In major trauma patients, examination with hand–carried ultrasound (HCU) according to the ‘focused assessment with sonography for trauma’ principles for the diagnosis of organ lacerations and free intra–abdominal fluid is a reliable and rapid alternative to multidetector CT (MDCT) scans and can help save precious time in emergency situations, and should, additionally, be evaluated in the pre–clinical workflow.

Methods

  • 31 major trauma patients with an injury severity score >15 and the necessity of a MDCT scan (standard of reference) were enrolled prospectively to this study, and additionally examined with a HCU, according to ‘focused assessment with sonography for trauma’ principles for the assessment of organ lacerations and free intra-abdominal fluid.
  • The HCU device employed was of the latest generation.
  • Statistical analysis was performed using PASW V.18.

Results

  • Four patients were diagnosed with free intra-abdominal fluid (prevalence 12.9%).
  • HCU showed a sensitivity and specificity of 75% and 100%, respectively.
  • Positive predictive value and negative predictive value were 100% and 96%, respectively.
  • Five patients had organ lacerations (prevalence 16.1%).
  • In these cases, the HCU was able to detect organ lacerations with a sensitivity and specificity of 80% and 100%, respectively.
  • Therefore, a positive predictive value and negative predictive value of 100% and 96%, respectively, were calculated.

Print Article Summary