is a standardized chest or abdominal protocol sufficient for evaluation of thoracic and lumbar spine trauma?

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OBJECTIVE: The objective of our study was to assess the diagnostic performance of a standardized 4-MDCT trauma protocol for the evaluation of the thoracic and lumbar spine in patients with multiple injuries. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Eighty-two patients with multiple injuries underwent MDCT for the chest and abdomen using a standardized 4-MDCT trauma protocol (collimation, 4 x 2.5 mm). Secondary reconstructions targeted to the spine were performed (slice width, 3 mm; reconstruction interval, 1.5 mm). All spinal fractures were additionally scanned using a collimation of 4 x 1 mm, and these images served as the standard of reference for fracture classification. An additional 50 patients with no spinal fracture served as the control group. A total of 65 major spinal fractures were present in 55 of the patients with multiple injuries. Two observers (observer 1 and observer 2) independently evaluated all CT data for spinal fractures using a 5-point confidence scale, classified the different ... more
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