E4882. Face and Neck Trauma: Beyond Broken Bones and Injured Vessels
  1. June Kim; University of Kentucky
Trauma, including accidents and iatrogenic events, may result in injuries to the face and neck, which radiologists or other providers may be able to diagnose with imaging. CT and CTA are often ordered for the diagnosis of bone fractures (e.g., spine and face) and acute vascular injury, but these modalities may reveal other injuries to various face and neck soft tissues structures, cartilages, and orbits. At times, these other injuries may be unexpected and overlooked. Timely identification may help facilitate patient care.

Educational Goals / Teaching Points
1) Become familiar with or review face and neck trauma findings, other than bone fractures and vascular injury, on imaging, through a review of selected cases. 2) Learn possible complications of some of these injuries, because the significance of these injuries in some instances may need to be conveyed when communicating with other providers.

Key Anatomic/Physiologic Issues and Imaging Findings/Techniques
A selection of mostly CT imaging examples of face and neck traumatic injuries will be provided. Noniatrogenic and iatrogenic examples will be presented. Potential complications of some of these injuries briefly will be discussed. Some examples of cases include thyroid cartilage fracture, which could result in vocal cord dysfunction; dislocation of native and implanted lenses, which may result in vision loss; and nasal turbinate avulsion, which may lead to complications including airway obstruction, nasal cavity obstruction, and hemorrhage.

A range of traumatic injuries of the face and neck, other than bone fractures and acute vascular injury, may be identified on imaging. Recognizing the appearance of these injuries, some of which may be unexpected or unfamiliar, and understanding possible consequences for the patient may potentially expedite treatment and limit complications.