Causes and distribution of facial fractures in a group of South African children and the value of computed tomography in their assessment

Int J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2006 Oct;35(10):903-6. doi: 10.1016/j.ijom.2006.07.008. Epub 2006 Sep 11.


The cases of 107 paediatric patients aged 0-12 years were retrospectively reviewed. The patients presented with facial trauma and both plain radiographs and computed tomography (CT) scans had been ordered. Sixty-five per cent of facial fractures were missed in radiography, but revealed on CT; fractures of the maxilla, the zygoma and the orbit were most frequently missed in radiography. Pedestrian motor vehicle accidents were the most frequent cause of facial fractures (37%), followed by passenger motor vehicle accidents (22%). In contrast with other studies reporting the mandible as the most frequent facial fracture site, the most common fracture sites in this study, in descending order of frequency, were the orbit, the frontal bone and the maxilla.

MeSH terms

  • Accidental Falls
  • Accidents, Traffic
  • Age Distribution
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Facial Bones / diagnostic imaging
  • Facial Bones / injuries*
  • Frontal Bone / diagnostic imaging
  • Frontal Bone / injuries
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Maxilla / diagnostic imaging
  • Maxilla / injuries
  • Orbit / diagnostic imaging
  • Orbit / injuries
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Skull Fractures / diagnostic imaging*
  • Skull Fractures / etiology
  • South Africa
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed
  • Zygoma / diagnostic imaging
  • Zygoma / injuries