UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: Trauma

Title: Thoracic trauma as a predictor of 30 day mortality

Keywords: thoracic trauma, rib fractures, Sweden, trauma, 30 day mortality (PubMed Search)

Posted: 3/12/2023 by Robert Flint, MD (Updated: 5/27/2024)
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This study from Sweden looked at 2397 trauma patients and identified 768 with thoracic injury. Those with thoracic injury had a 30-day mortality of 11% whereas those without thoracic injury had a 4% 30-day mortality. Patients over age 60 had higher mortality and were more likely to have rib fractures. Those under 60 with thoracic injury were more likely to have thoracic organ injury than rib fracture.


Bottom line: Rib fractures were more common over age 60 and there was a higher mortality for those with thoracic vs non-thoracic trauma.


Lundin, A., Akram, S.K., Berg, L. et al. Thoracic injuries in trauma patients: epidemiology and its influence on mortality. Scand J Trauma Resusc Emerg Med 30, 69 (2022).