Association of thoracic and abdominal injuries in patients with major trauma is common. Under emergency conditions, it is often difficult to promptly perform a certain diagnosis and identify treatment priorities of life-threatening lesions. We present the case of a young man with combined thoracic and abdominal injuries after a motorcycle accident. Primary evaluation through echography and X-ray showed fluid within the hepatorenal recess and an enlarged mediastinum. Volume load, blood transfusions, and vasoactive agents were initiated to sustain circulation. Despite hemodynamic instability, we decided to perform computed tomographic angiography (CTA) scan that revealed a high-grade traumatic aortic pseudoaneurysm, multiple and severe areas of liver contusion, and a small amount of hemoperitoneum, without active bleeding spots. The patient was successfully submitted to thoracic endovascular aortic repair (TEVAR). Immediately after the end of the successful TEVAR, signs of massive abdominal bleeding revealed. Immediate explorative laparotomy was performed showing massive hepatic hemorrhage. After liver packing and Pringle's maneuver, control of bleeding was lastly obtained with hemostatic devices and selective cross-clamping of the right hepatic artery. The patient was then transferred to intensive care unit where, despite absence of further hemorrhage, hemodynamic instability, anuria, severe lactic acidosis together with liver necrosis indices appeared. A new CTA demonstrated massive parenchymal disruption within the right lobe of the liver and multiple hematomas in the left lobe. Considering the high-grade lesions of the hepatic vascular tree and liver failure, patient was listed for emergency liver transplantation (LT). LT occurred few hours later, and patient's clinical conditions rapidly improved even if the subsequent clinical course was characterized by a severe fungal infection because of immunosuppression. Evaluation of life-threatening lesions and treatment priorities, availability of different excellence skills, and multidisciplinary collaboration have a key role to achieve clinical success in such severe cases.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine