Evaluation of mild head injury in a pediatric population

Boran B. O. , Boran P. , Barut N., Akgun C., Celikoglu E., Bozbuga M.

PEDIATRIC NEUROSURGERY, cilt.42, sa.4, ss.203-207, 2006 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier identifier

  • Yayın Türü: Makale / Tam Makale
  • Cilt numarası: 42 Konu: 4
  • Basım Tarihi: 2006
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1159/000092355
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.203-207


Approximately 5 million children present to emergency departments, seeking care for head injuries, each year, and 80% of these children are classified as cases of mild head injury. Due to the huge number of patients and low frequency of intracranial lesions in this group, obtaining a computed tomography scan for each and every patient is a significant economic problem. This study was conducted to identify the clinical parameters and the radiographic findings that may be associated with intracranial lesions in children with mild head injury. 421 patients, with a Glasgow Coma Scale score of 15 and without any focal neurological deficit, were studied. Intracranial lesion was noted in 37 cases (8.8%). Sensitivity of a plain radiogram was 43.2%, and specificity was 93%. An intracranial pathology was demonstrated in 28.9% of the patients with a linear skull fracture. The only clinical parameters associated with an increase in the frequency of detection of intracranial lesions were posttraumatic seizures and loss of consciousness. Age, sex, headache, vomiting and scalp lacerations were not associated with a higher frequency. Even when patients with a history of loss of consciousness or posttraumatic seizure were subtracted from the study group, intracranial lesions were noted in 4.1% of the cases, and in 1.8% neurosurgical intervention was required. Computed tomography is the gold standard in the evaluation of pediatric patients with mild head trauma, and every child who has experienced a head injury should undergo a cranial computed tomography evaluation, even if he or she appears in perfect health. Copyright (c) 2006 S. Karger AG, Basel.