Emergency Care in Facial Trauma – A Maxillofacial
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Emergency Care in Facial Trauma – A Maxillofacial and Ophthalmic Perspective Injury, Int. J. Care Injured (2005) 36, 875—896. Presented by intern 朱岑玲. Introduction. Aim: consider life- and sight- threatening conditions that may occur following trauma to the face.

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Emergency Care in Facial Trauma – A Maxillofacialand Ophthalmic PerspectiveInjury, Int. J. Care Injured (2005) 36, 875—896

Presented by intern 朱岑玲


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Introduction

  • Aim: consider life- and sight- threatening conditions that may occur following trauma to the face.

  • Life- and sight- threatening complications may occur following apparently trivial injuries, which may not immediately be evident on arrival in the resuscitation or emergency setting.

  • Assessment needs to be both systematic and repeated.

  • True maxillofacial and ophthalmic ‘‘emergencies’’ are uncommon.


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ATLS and the Maxillofacial Region identification and management to preserve life, or sight.

  • When managing facial injuries, this involves assessment and maintenance of the airway and control of obvious bleeding.

  • The early identification of a sight-threatening condition may be possible during ‘‘D’’.

  • High index of suspicion; frequent re-assessment


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Airway with Control of C-Spine identification and management to preserve life, or sight.

  • Even in those patients who give an appropriate response, this should still be followed by direct inspection of the mouth and pharynx for loose, or foreign, bodies, and signs of continuing bleeding.

  • Retropharyngeal haematoma cervical spine injury

  • The cervical spine should be immobilised, unless the patient is agitated and extremely restless.


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  • The most common obstructing materials that threaten the airway in facial injuries are blood and vomit.

  • The potential for obstruction is present in almost all patients with significant facial injuries, due to pooling of blood and secretions in the pharynx, especially when supine.


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Can I sit up? airway in facial injuries are

  • A desire to vomit, or unrecognized partial airway obstruction from swelling, loss of tongue support, or bleeding.

  • ATLS? based on a risk/benefit analysis

  • When multi-system injury is obvious, or suspected, attempts to sit up are even more problematic and if the patient is combative, early intubation and ventilation may be necessary to secure the airway.


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The Significance of Fractures and Soft Tissue Swelling protect the cervical spine as best possible.

  • Loss of tongue support, significant soft tissue swelling, and intraoral bleeding may occur with bilateral, or comminuted, anterior mandibular fractures.

  • Simple anterior mobile mandibular fractures temporarily be reduced and stabilized reduces bleeding, swallow more effectively


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  • Combined mandibular and middle third facial fractures: high risk of airway problems regular and repeated assessments

  • Significant soft tissue swelling usually occurs with major ‘‘panfacial’’ injuries, often necessitating prolonged intubation, or planned elective tracheostomy.

  • Fractures of the hyoid bone: a surrogate ‘‘marker’’ of significant injury and indicative of the risk of airway obstruction.

  • Stridor necessitates urgent intubation.


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The Anterior Neck risk of airway problems

  • A forgotten site!!

  • Between “A” and “B”

  • History: wearing a motorcycle helmet, strangulation, or contact sport injury

  • A hoarse voice, haemoptysis, surgical emphysema, or fracture crepitus in the neck are highly suggestive of such injuries and should actively be sought.


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The Cervical Spine risk of airway problems

  • Several patterns of C-spine injury following facial trauma have been reported:

    • Mandibular fr. and upper C-spine injuries

    • Mid facial injuries and lower C-spine injuries

      little practical importance

      the best policy is to assume that spinal injury is present


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Airway Maintenance Techniques risk of airway problems

  • All trauma patients should receive oxygen.

  • With severe facial injuries, early involvement of an experienced anaesthetist is essential.


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Vomiting Following Facial Injuries airway.

  • Predisposing factors: food, blood in the stomach, alcohol intoxication and brain injuries

  • Warning signs: repeated requests or attempts by the patient to sit up

  • The difficulty arises in deciding which patients are at high risk of pulmonary aspiration after vomiting and therefore need to be intubated.

  • Best managed by lowering the head of the trolley approximately 15—30 cms and applying high flow suction.


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Definitive Airway airway.

  • Oro-tracheal intubation, naso-tracheal intubation, surgical cricothyroidotomy

  • Oro-tracheal intubation with in-line cervical immobilisation is the technique of choice in the majority of cases.

  • In the absence of midfacial, or craniofacial, fractures: blind naso-tracheal intubation, or fibreoptic assisted oro- and naso-tracheal intubation


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Breathing failure to secure the airway.

  • In the context of isolated maxillofacial injuries, breathing problems may occur following aspiration of teeth, dentures, vomit and other foreign materials.

  • If teeth or dentures have been lost chest X-ray and soft tissue view of the neck


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Circulation failure to secure the airway.

  • Hypovolaemic shock facial injuries are unlikely to be the sole cause and a careful search made elsewhere for occult bleeding.

  • ‘‘Severe’’ facial haemorrhage has been reported to occur in approximately 1 in 10 serious facial injuries.

  • Bleeding from comminuted fractures and soft tissue injuries can contribute to hypovolaemia and should be considered in all facial fractures.


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Vision-Threatening Injuries failure to secure the airway.

  • Retrobulbar hemorrhage

  • Traumatic optic neuropathy

  • Open and Closed globe injuries

  • Loss of eyelid integrity

  • Chemical injury


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Retrobulbar Hemorrhage failure to secure the airway.

  • A compartment syndrome within the orbit

  • Raised intra-orbital pressure is caused by bleeding and associated oedema compresses the ophthalmic and retinal vessels retinal ischaemia

  • A convenient time rapidly to assess the eyes is when the pupils are assessed as part of the GCS. Pain, proptosis, loss of vision and the presence of an afferent pupillary defect are the principal features for which to look.


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  • In those patients in whom visual loss may be reversible, and who are well enough, the management of retrobulbar haemorrhage is surgical. (to decompress the orbit)

  • Medical treatments and a lateral canthotomy:

    • High-dose intravenous steroids, acetazolamide (250-500 mg) and mannitol (1 g/kg) are started before surgery and continued after surgery until the globe pressure is seen to be falling.


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Traumatic Optic Neuropathy who are well enough, the management of retrobulbar haemorrhage is surgical. (to decompress the orbit)

  • Deceleration injuries and blunt trauma (motor vehicle collisions, falls and assaults) to the face and head are common causes of traumatic optic neuropathy.

  • When the eye appears normal, but there is reduced vision and an afferent pupillary defect, injury to the nerve near the optic canal should be suspected.


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  • Treatment is controversial and may be medical, or surgical: who are well enough, the management of retrobulbar haemorrhage is surgical. (to decompress the orbit)

    • Intravenous methylprednisolone

    • surgical decompression is generally reserved for patients who fail to respond to steroid treatment, in whom visual recovery is felt possible


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Open and Closed Globe Injuries who are well enough, the management of retrobulbar haemorrhage is surgical. (to decompress the orbit)

  • ‘‘Open’’: a full thickness wound in the corneo-scleral wall of the eye

  • ‘‘Closed’’: does not have a full thickness wound in the eye wall

  • Bad prognosis:

    • A poor initial visual acuity

    • A relative afferent pupillary defect

    • Posterior involvement of the eye


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  • Open globe injury: who are well enough, the management of retrobulbar haemorrhage is surgical. (to decompress the orbit)

    • Bloodstained tears

    • The eye looks collapsed and uveal tissue, retina and the vitreous gel may be seen prolapsing out of the eye

    • The intra-ocular pressure is low

    • Tx: Primary surgical repair as soon as possible and no later than within 24 h after trauma.


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  • Closed globe injury: who are well enough, the management of retrobulbar haemorrhage is surgical. (to decompress the orbit)

    • the globe looks formed and the intra-ocular pressure is usually high

    • Tx: steroid, antibiotic, cycloplegic and anti-hypertensive eye drops


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Loss of Eyelid Integrity who are well enough, the management of retrobulbar haemorrhage is surgical. (to decompress the orbit)

  • Inability effectively to close the eyelids rapidly results in desiccation of the cornea, ulceration and potentially loss of sight.

  • In the presence of eyelid lacerations, assessment and management of the underlying globe is more important than that of the eyelid.

  • Visual acuity, visual fields, colour vision, ocular movement, the pupil and the fundus should be examined in all patients with eyelid lacerations.


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Chemical Injury the patient and the presence of other injuries. Repair of lid lacerations can safely be deferred for up to 48 h.

  • Chemicals that have a pH different from that of the eye (pH 7.4) can cause a burn.

  • Alkalis cause more damage than acids, as they break down lipid membranes and penetrate deeper.

  • The greater the pH difference, the more concentrated the solution and the longer the contact time, the more damage is caused.


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Conclusions and irrigation with copious amounts of Ringer lactate (at least 2 L)

  • Life- and vision-threatening maxillofacial emergencies are uncommon. However, they do occur in well-defined high risk groups and, as such, it is important that clinicians maintain a high index of suspicion and treat these emergencies accordingly.

  • The best outcome for these traumatised patients is associated with treatment by a multi-disciplinary trauma team, which includes a maxillofacial surgeon who has experience of these conditions.