Prospective study on incidence of adult respiratory distress syndrome in blunt injury chest


  • Balamurugan C. Department of General Surgery, Stanley Medical College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Hari Narayan M. Department of General Surgery, Stanley Medical College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
  • Seetha G. Department of General Surgery, Stanley Medical College, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India



ARDS, Blunt trauma, Hemopneumothorax, Mechanical ventilation


Background: This study was done to find out prospectively the incidence of adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) in a random group of patients sustaining blunt trauma to the chest of any etiology and to study the factors involved in its causation and outcome.

Methods: Totally 150 patients who admitted in surgical wards and casualty of Stanley Medical College, Tamil Nadu during the period of March 2021 to February 2022 were studied. A thorough clinical examination of the patient was then done to identify any injury to the organs in the chest. This was then followed by investigations if the patient was stable enough not to warrant any emergency surgical intervention and data were collected outcomes were studied.

Results: Out of 150 patients, 74 of them had road traffic accidents, 39 of them had history of assault, 32 of them had fall from height regarding clinical manifestations 34 of them had dyspnea, 58 of them had single rib fracture, 48 of them had multiple rib fractures, 32 of them had pneumothorax, 19 of them had hemothorax, 8 of them had hemopneumothorax, 34 of them had flail chest, 20 of them had lung contusion 2 of them had diaphragmatic injury. In view of outcome, out of 150 patients, one of them had ARDS, 47 of them had thoracostomy, two of them had mechanical ventilation, one of them had laparotomy and seven of them died.

Conclusions: According to this study, the incidence of ARDS in blunt injury of chest was <1% in this study. Road traffic accidents have been the most common reason for blunt injury of chest.


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