has become ubiquitous in the trauma
suite. Initial reports suggest that sonography may be used for the detection of pneumothorax
. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of sonography to rule out the presence of a pneumothorax
in the trauma
A prospective analysis of 328 consecutive trauma
patients at an American College of Surgeons-verified Level I trauma
center was undertaken. Thoracic ultrasound
was performed before chest radiography. The presence or absence of a “sliding-lung” sign or “comet-tail
” artifact was recorded.
Of 328 evaluations, there were 312 true-negatives, 12 true-positives, 1 false-negative, 1 false-positive, and 2 exclusions. Specificity, negative predictive value, and accuracy were 99.7%, 99.7%, and 99.4%, respectively.
is a reliable modality for the diagnosis of pneumothorax
in the injured patient. This modality may serve as an adjunct or precursor to routine chest radiography in the evaluation of injured patients.