Upper Extremity Patterns of Injury and Management at a Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Referral Center in Mexico City

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Acute upper extremity injuries remain one of the most common consultations in the emergency departments for plastic surgery services. These injuries can affect a person's quality of life and negatively affect work-related or social interactions if not properly managed. We aim to evaluate our experience and management in a specialized referral center in Mexico City.


A retrospective review was performed. All patients with hand trauma managed by our service from July 2010 to June 2015 were included; their demographic characteristics were described as well as the most common patterns of injury, management, and outcome.


A total of 4751 patients with injuries in the upper extremities were included, 77% were males with a mean age of presentation of 26.9 ± 17.9 years; the age group most commonly affected was between 16 to 30 years (39%); 54% of the cases affected the right hand. Lacerative wounds were the most common mechanism of injury (60.7%), followed by blunt trauma (28.7%). Management was surgical in 87% of the cases.


Upper extremity trauma encompasses a wide range of clinical presentations, from simple lacerations to catastrophic injuries that require extensive or multiple reconstructive procedures. The clear understanding of the trauma mechanisms and how they are related with certain patterns of injury might maximize awareness and guide a surgeon's management effectively.

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