The Role of Three-Dimensional Computed Tomography in the Evaluation of Acute Craniofacial Trauma

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Three-dimensional computed tomographic (3-D CT) reformations together with their corresponding conventional axial two-dimensional (2-D) CT images of 20 patients with facial fractures were compared with 2-D CT alone to define their usefulness in the determination of facial skeletal fracture patterns. Nine surgeons with three different levels of experience and training evaluated the presence and spatial arrangement of fractures in all 2-D CT and 3-D CT scans. Comparisons were made between their evaluations of 2-D CT alone and 2-D CT plus 3-D CT scans. Statistical analyses with Friedman's test were performed. The addition of 3-D CT did not alter the interpretation of 2-D CT in 75% of evaluations. The number and accuracy of the changes made with the aid of 3-D CT reflected the experience of the observers. Overall, there was no improvement in the accuracy of interpretations with the addition of 3-D CT.

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