Angiographic Embolization for Intraperitoneal and Retroperitoneal Injuries
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Angiographic embolization (AE) has been used extensively for bleeding control after injuries to the face and neck. Its role in abdominal trauma requires further exploration. We reviewed the medical records of 137 consecutive patients who underwent angiography with the intent to embolize bleeding sites within the abdomen. Of them, 97 (71%) had blunt and 40 (29%) had penetrating trauma. AE was performed for hemorrhage associated with pelvic fractures (97 patients), liver lacerations (n= 26), renal lacerations (n= 12), splenic lacerations (n= 5), other injuries (n= 9), and multiple injuries (n= 12). On angiography, 102 patients were found to have bleeding sites and underwent AE, with angiographic and clinical bleeding control in 93 (91%). The rate of successful hemostasis by AE was identical in blunt and penetrating trauma patients. There was no major morbidity after AE. No factors predicted patients with a high likelihood to have a positive angiogram. Patients who had AE before or after a period of attempted hemodynamic stabilization in the intensive care unit were no different with respect to hemodynamic parameters immediately before AE or effectiveness of AE for bleeding control. AE is a safe and effective method for controlling bleeding after blunt and penetrating intra- and retroperitoneal injuries. Early AE may be used in selected patients as a front-line therapeutic intervention that offers expeditious hemostasis and prevents delays in definitive bleeding control.
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