ISSN : 1301-5680
e-ISSN : 2149-8156
Turkish Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery     
Penetrating cardiac injuries
Şinasi Manduz1, Nurkay Katrancıoğlu1, Hakan Bingöl1, Hayri Atlı2, Kasım Doğan2
1 Cumhuriyet Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi Kalp ve Damar Cerrahisi Anabilim Dalı, Sivas
2 Gülhane Askeri Tıp Akademisi Kalp ve Damar Cerrahisi Anabilim Dalı, Ankara
Background: Penetrating cardiac injuries are highly dramatic traumas due to their clinical consequences. In this study, we evaluated patients treated surgically for penetrating cardiac injuries with respect to characteristics of injuries, symptoms, treatment modalities, and clinical outcome.

Methods: Records of 41 patients (39 males, 2 females; mean age 26±12 years; range 13 to 48 years) who underwent surgical treatment for penetrating cardiac injuries from 1998 to 2006 were retrospectively reviewed. Those that showed no vital signs at the time of presentation were excluded.

Results: Thirty-five patients (85.4%) had stab wounds and six patients (14.6%) had gunshot wounds. Surgical interventions included left (n=15) and right (n=14) anterolateral thoracotomies, and median sternotomy (n=12). Cardiac injuries involved the right ventricle in 26 patients, left ventricle in eight patients, right atrium in six patients, and superior vena cava in one patient. Emergency surgical interventions were performed in all the patients. Cardiac wounds were repaired by primary suturing. The mean intensive care unit stay was 2.6±1.1 days and the mean hospital stay was 11.2±3.8 days. Mortality occurred in six cases (14.6%).

Conclusion: Penetrating cardiac injuries are seen especially in the young age group. Timely, rapid, and appropriate interventions are of particular importance to decrease mortality.

Keywords : Heart injuries/epidemiology/surgery; thoracic injuries; wounds, penetrating/epidemiology
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