Archives of Academic Emergency Medicine,
Vol. 4 No. 3 (2016),
Introduction:Â Necessity of imaging for symptom-free conscious patients presented to emergency department (ED) following traumatic thoracolumbar spine injuries has been a matter of debate. The present study was aimed to evaluate the diagnostic value of clinical findings in prediction of traumatic thoracolumbar injuries compared tocomputed tomography (CT) scan.Â Methods:Â The present diagnostic value study was carried out using non-random convenience sampling during the time between October 2013 and March 2014. All trauma patients > 15 years old underwent thoracolumbar CT scan were included. Correlation between clinical and CT findings was measured using SPSS 21.0 and screening performance characteristics of clinical findings in prediction of thoracolumbar fracture were calculated.Â Results:Â 169 patients with mean age of 37.8 Â± 17.3 years (rage: 15-86) were evaluated (69.8% male). All fracture patients had at least 1 positive finding in history and physical examination. The fracture was confirmed in only 24.6% of the patients with positive findings in history or physical examination. In 37.5% of patients the location of fracture, matched the area of positive physical examinations. Sensitivity, specificity, PPV, NPV, PLR, and NLR of clinical findings in comparison to thoracolumbar CT scan were 100 (95% CI: 89 - 100), 1.5 (95% CI: 0.2-6), 24.5 (95% CI: 18.3-31.9), 100 (95% CI: 19.7-100), 32.5 (95% CI: 24.6-43.03), and infinite, respectively.Â Conclusion:Â The results of the present study, show the excellent screening performance characteristics of clinical findings in prediction of traumatic thoracolumbar fracture (100% sensitivity). It could be concluded that in conscious patients with stable hemodynamic, who have no distracting pain and are not intoxicated, probability of thoracolumbar fracture is very low and near to zero in case of no positive clinical finding.