Blunt thoracic aortic injury with small pseudoaneurysm may be managed by nonoperative treatment

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The efficacy of nonoperative management of blunt thoracic aortic injury (BTAI) was evaluated in patients with pseudoaneurysm.


A retrospective review was done for patients with BTAI at Fukui Prefectural Hospital during a 9-year period. Charts were reviewed for age, gender, Injury Severity Score, Abbreviated Injury Scale for each body area, initial type of aortic injury, site of aortic injury, type of definitive management, complications, and outcomes.


Eighteen patients with BTAI were treated at Fukui Prefectural Hospital. Of 18 patients with pseudoaneurysm, seven patients were hemodynamically unstable and four patients died because of associated injuries; there were no aortic-related deaths. All 14 surviving patients were followed up for an average of 40.9 months. Only two patients with pseudoaneurysm required operative management because of the progression of the pseudoaneurysm. The pseudoaneurysm/normal aortic diameter ratio of those with any intervention was higher than that of those with nonoperative management.


BTAI with pseudoaneurysm can be managed nonoperatively, with about 10% risk of progression to require surgical repair.

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