MDCT diagnosis of penetrating diaphragm injury

Eur Radiol. 2009 Aug;19(8):1875-81. doi: 10.1007/s00330-009-1367-9. Epub 2009 Mar 31.


The purpose of the study was to determine the diagnostic sensitivity and specificity of multidetector CT (MDCT) in detection of diaphragmatic injury following penetrating trauma. Chest and abdominal CT examinations performed preoperatively in 136 patients after penetrating trauma to the torso with injury trajectory in close proximity to the diaphragm were reviewed by radiologists unaware of surgical findings. Signs associated with diaphragmatic injuries in penetrating trauma were noted. These signs were correlated with surgical diagnoses, and their sensitivity and specificity in assisting the diagnosis were calculated. CT confirmed diaphragmatic injury in 41 of 47 injuries (sensitivity, 87.2%), and an intact diaphragm in 71 of 98 patients (specificity, 72.4%). The overall accuracy of MDCT was 77%. The most accurate sign helping the diagnosis was contiguous injury on either side of the diaphragm in single-entry penetrating trauma (sensitivity, 88%; specificity, 82%). Thus MDCT has high sensitivity and good specificity in detecting penetrating diaphragmatic injuries.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Diaphragm / diagnostic imaging*
  • Diaphragm / injuries*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • Tomography, X-Ray Computed / methods*
  • Wounds, Penetrating / diagnostic imaging*
  • Young Adult