About this Research Topic
Chest trauma is frequently seen in polytraumatized patients and includes a variety of different injuries, ranging from blunt trauma with simple rib fractures to life-threatening injuries such as penetrating cardiac lacerations. Injuries to the chest are still responsible for up to 25% of all trauma deaths and represent a significant contributing factor in the development of organ dysfunction and failure during intensive care treatment. Prompt evaluation in the emergency room is crucial to identify those thoracic injuries that require immediate life-saving interventions. While the vast majority of injuries can be treated conservatively or with the insertion of a chest tube, some require urgent surgical procedures, including resuscitative emergency department thoracotomy. Therefore, immediate physical examinations according to ATLS algorithms and diagnostic imaging are essential in order not to delay accurate and proper management.
In the clinical management of patients with chest trauma, many issues and treatment modalities are lively debated and controversially discussed in the literature. Typically, the approach to chest injuries depends on the injury mechanism (blunt versus penetrating), the hemodynamic condition of the patient (stable versus unstable) and the injury pattern and location. Standardized therapeutic algorithms and a high index of suspicion for life-threatening injuries are of utmost importance in the management of these patients. Therefore, the clinically highly relevant topic of „Chest Injuries“ addressed in this issue should on the one hand outline a global approach to thoracic injuries based on standardized diagnostic and therapeutic guidelines, but should on the other hand also present recent advances in surgical and critical care management of patients with severe chest trauma.
This special issue is an outstanding opportunity to share information on new advances in the management of patients with injuries to the chest. Initial evaluation and management of patients with chest trauma, diagnosis and treatment of thoracic injuries, as well as ward and critical care aspects should be addressed in this issue. Only a selection of potential topics is listed below:
- Resuscitative emergency department thoracotomy in blunt and penetrating trauma mechanisms - The use of video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) in the acute trauma setting
- Current concepts and management of thoracic aortic injuries and the role of endovascular approaches - Rib fracture fixation and the optimal time-point of surgery
- Management of lung contusions
- Pain control in chest injuries
Keywords: Thoracic injuries, Trauma, Blunt, Penetrating, Fracture, Cardiac injury, Vascular injury, Hemothorax, Pneumothorax, Mediastinum, Thoracostomy, Thoracotomy, Chest tube
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