A case report of a polytrauma patient with penetrating iron rods in thorax and head

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Abstract

Introduction:

Impalement injury is an uncommon presentation, and penetrating chest injuries account for 1% to 13% of thoracic trauma hospital admissions. The vast majority of patients with penetrating thoracic trauma who survive to reach the hospital alive can be managed nonoperatively. Nevertheless, in 10% to 15% of cases, emergency operation is necessary due to the associated hemorrhagic shock and visceral injury.

Case presentation:

Here, we report on a 39-year-old male, a construction worker, who fell down from a height of a construction site, landing ventrally on a clump of iron rods with 4 projecting heavy metallic rods penetrating into his thorax and head (scalp pierced only). Emergency surgery was taken, and the patient had an uneventful successful outcome.

Conclusions:

After massive thoracic impalement, rapid transportation to a tertiary trauma center with the impaled objects in situ can improve the outcome. Video-assisted thoracic surgery (VATS) is recommended to remove the foreign body under direct vision and to reduce the incidence of missed, potentially fatal vascular or visceral injuries.

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