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J Korean Soc Emerg Med > Volume 12(1); 2001 > Article
Journal of The Korean Society of Emergency Medicine 2001;12(1): 57-63.
Emergency Ultrasonography in Unconscious Trauma Victims
Young Jin Cheon, Ji Yeong Ryu, Eun Kyung Eo, Koo Young Jung
Department of Emergency Medicine, College of Medicine, Ewha Womans University, Korea. kcssis@hanmail.net
ABSTRACT
BACKGROUND: The objective of this study was to determine the sensitivity, specificity of the ultrasound examination performed by emergency physicians in patients with altered mental state due to trauma.
METHODS:
From July 1998 until June 2000, a total number of 59 patients showing altered mental state were examined using emergency ultrasound at the time of primary survey. Their medical records were reviewed, and the interpretations of the emergency ultrasound were compared with the abdominal CT scan or clinical results.
RESULTS:
Of the 59 patients, 3 were excluded due to incomplete records. Among the 56 remaining patients, 9 patients had intra-abdominal problems. The sensitivity and specificity were 77% and 95.7%, respectively. Abdominal CT was not required in 41 (73.2%) patients.
CONCLUSION:
Emergency ultrasonography can serve as a useful screening tool in detecting free fluid in trauma victims who are not mentally alert.
Key words: Emergency ultrasound, Abdominal trauma
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