Cranial computed tomography scan findings in acute head injury


Background and objective: Head injury is a common injury seen in emergency departments. Early diagnosis and treatment may ameliorate the morbidity and mortality associated with intracranial injury. Computed tomography (CT) scan of the brain is a reliable imaging modality for identification of intracranial lesions in patients with an acute head injury. This study aimed to assess the cranial CT scan findings in patients with acute head injury, find out the main indication for requesting CT scan imaging, detect main etiologic factors and its distribution among different age groups.Methods: This was a prospective cross-sectional study of cranial CT scan findings of 210 patients with acute head injury admitted to an emergency hospital in Hawler during three months. Numerical and graphical descriptors were used to summarize the data.Results: The age of the studied patients ranged from 2 to 67 years with a mean± SD of 29.23±15.1 with males dominating the sample (78.6%).Road traffic accident was the main cause of injury (65.7%).The most common indication for requesting a CT scan was an altered level of consciousness and vomiting. Intracranial CT scan findings related to head injury were seen in 82% of victims of which fractures (50%) and intracranial hematomas (45.2%) were the main findings followed by combined injuries(31.8) and soft tissue injuries (31.6%).Incidental intracranial findings not related to trauma were seen in 6.2% of cases.Conclusion: In patients with acute head injury, CT scan can be used as the initial imaging investigation as it can yield various types of head injuries and their consequences related to trauma.