Trauma is one of the main causes of death in the young population, and trauma-related deaths usually occur in the initial hours following the trauma and are frequently associated with bleeding. In elderly populations, physiological changes and concomitant conditions alleviate the negative consequences of trauma. In injuries to the head or spine, thoracic trauma is the trauma category that is mostly associated with a serious risk of mortality, being generally penetrating or blunt thoracic traumas. Of these, blunt thoracic traumas are more frequent and fatal than penetrating traumas and are caused most often by traffic accidents. The most common causes of death related to blunt thoracic trauma include injuries to the heart and main vessels, and in such cases, emergency resuscitation, early diagnosis, and fast and effective treatment could be life-saving. Penetrating thoracic traumas may result in intrathoracic organ injuries and develop following stab wounds, firearm injuries, and explosions and are likely to require very urgent interventions. Emergency medical interventions could be life-saving in the presence of penetrating thoracic trauma, while mortality in these cases is mostly due to respiratory problems and heart or lung pathologies.
Part of the book: Trauma Surgery