Is emergent cervical radiological evaluation mandatory in isolated cranial gunshot injury?
Atilla Yilmaz1, Murteza Cakir2
1Mustafa Kemal University, Faculty of Medicine Department of Neurosurgery, Hatay, Turkey
2Ataturk University, Faculty of Medicine Department of Neurosurgery, Erzurum, Turkey
Aim: The aim of this study was to evaluate the accompanied cervical injuries of the patients presenting to the emergency department (ED) because of penetrating, perforating or tangential cranial gunshot injuries (CGI).
Material and Methods: The retrospective study included 137 patients that presented to the EDs at Mustafa Kemal and Ataturk University due to penetrating, perforating or tangential CGI between 2014 and 2018. Patients younger than 12 years old and had insufficient radiological records were excluded from the study and thus 115 patients were included in the study.
Results: 115 patients included 105 (91%) men and 10 (9%) women with a mean age of 27 (range, 12-65) years. Of the 115 injuries, 84 (73%) were high-velocity and 31 (27%) were low-velocity gunshot injuries. The injuries included 92 (80%) penetrating or perforating and 23 (20%) tangential injuries. No cervical dislocation injury was accompanied by CGI in any patient. Unilateral lamina fracture of the cervical vertebra was observed in one patient.
Conclusion: Our results support the opinion that isolated penetrating, perforating or tangential CGI did not cause to cervical spinal injuries, the intubation or tracheostomy procedures should not be postponed after radiological evaluation of cervical spinal stability.