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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 67-72

Pattern of computed tomographic findings in patients referred with head injury secondary to road traffic accident in a Nigerian otolarhyngologic center

Department of Radiology, Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital, Kaduna State University, Kaduna, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Tokan S Baduku
Department of Radiology, Barau Dikko Teaching Hospital, Kaduna State University, Kaduna
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ais.ais_5_20

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Background: Head injuries are common causes of morbidity and mortality in trauma patients. Computed tomography (CT) is an important imaging modality in the management of patients with a head injury. This study aimed at documenting the pattern of CT findings among patients with a head injury who presented to the Radiology Department of a tertiary hospital which has neither a Neurology nor a Neurosurgical unit. Patient and Methods: This is a one-year retrospective study carried out on 127 patients seen at the National Ear Care Centre (NECC), a premier Ear Nose and Throat health institution, which serves as a referral center for cities and towns within Nigeria. Radiology request cards, duplicate copy of radiology reports, and soft copy of their CT images were analyzed. All patients with a history of head trauma from other causes were excluded from the study. Results: A total of 127 patients were recruited from January 2017 to December 2017 and had cranial CT done. Their mean age was 35.5 (range 1–70 yrs) with M: F of 3:1. The most frequently involved age group was 21–30 years, accounting for 26.7%. Referrals from secondary and primary health centers accounted for 22% and 28%, respectively. Thirty-seven (29%) patients had normal brain CT findings. The most common abnormal findings were skull fractures and intracerebral hemorrhage in 63 (26%) and 55 (18.8%) patients, respectively. Less common findings include midline shifts, intracranial pneomocoeles, metallic foreign bodies, ventricular hemorrhages, effacements, and compressions. Conclusions: The patronage of CT imaging modality by primary and secondary health centers is significant, constituting 50% of the referrals. This suggests that medical personnel in the secondary and primary health centers are maximizing the use of CT as a diagnostic modality. Also, skull fracture still dominates the CT findings.

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