J Trauma Inj.  2021 Jun;34(2):81-86. 10.20408/jti.2021.0019.

Single-Center Clinical Analysis of Traumatic Thoracic Aortic Injuries: A Retrospective Observational Study

  • 1Trauma Center, Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Dankook University Hospital, Cheonan,
  • 2Department of Trauma Surgery, Gil Medical Center, Gachon University College of Medicine, Incheon,



This study investigated the clinical outcomes of trauma patients with blunt thoracic aortic injuries at a single institution.


During the study period, 9,501 patients with traumatic aortic injuries presented to Trauma Center of Gil Medical Center. Among them, 1,594 patients had severe trauma, with an Injury Severity Score (ISS) of >15. Demographics, physiological data, injury mechanism, hemodynamic parameters associated with the thoracic injury according to chest computed tomography (CT) findings, the timing of the intervention, and clinical outcomes were reviewed.


Twenty-eight patients had blunt aortic injuries (75% male, mean age, 45.9±16.3 years). The majority (82.1%, n=23/28) of these patients were involved in traffic accidents. The median ISS was 35.0 (interquartile range 21.0–41.0). The injuries were found in the ascending aorta (n=1, 3.6%) aortic arch (n=8, 28.6%) aortic isthmus (n=18, 64.3%), and descending aorta (n=1, 3.6%). The severity of aortic injuries on chest CT was categorized as intramural hematoma (n=1, 3.6%), dissection (n=3, 10.7%), transection (n=9, 32.2%), pseudoaneurysm (n=12, 42.8%), and rupture (n=3, 10.7%). Endovascular repair was performed in 71.4% of patients (45% within 24 hours), and two patients received surgical management. The mortality rate was 25% (n=7).


Traumatic thoracic aortic injuries are life-threatening. In our experience, however, if there is no rupture and extravasation from an aortic injury, resuscitation and stabilization of vital signs are more important than an intervention for an aortic injury in patients with multiple traumas. Further study is required to optimize the timing of the intervention and explore management strategies for blunt thoracic aortic injuries in severe trauma patients needing resuscitation.


Aorta, thoracic; Aneurysm, false; Traumatic; Multiple trauma
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