Comparison of PECARN clinical decision rule and clinician suspicion in predicting intra-abdominal injury in children with blunt torso trauma in the emergency department


Caylak S. T. , YAKA E., YILMAZ S., DOĞAN N. Ö. , ÖZTURAN İ. U. , PEKDEMİR M.

ULUSAL TRAVMA VE ACIL CERRAHI DERGISI-TURKISH JOURNAL OF TRAUMA & EMERGENCY SURGERY, vol.28, no.4, pp.529-536, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 28 Issue: 4
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.14744/tjtes.2022.40156
  • Journal Name: ULUSAL TRAVMA VE ACIL CERRAHI DERGISI-TURKISH JOURNAL OF TRAUMA & EMERGENCY SURGERY
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, CINAHL, EMBASE, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.529-536
  • Keywords: Clinical decision rule, clinician suspicion, computed tomography, intra-abdominal injury, pediatric trauma, VERY-LOW RISK, IDENTIFYING CHILDREN, IDENTIFICATION, CARE, CT
  • Kocaeli University Affiliated: Yes

Abstract

BACKGROUND: The Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network (PECARN) developed a clinical decision rule to identify children at low risk for intra-abdominal injury requiring acute intervention (IAI-I) for reducing unnecessary radiation exposure of abdominal computed tomography (CT) after blunt torso trauma. This study aimed to compare the PECARN decision rule with clinician suspicion in identifying children at low risk of intra-abdominal injuries that an abdominal CT scan can be safely avoided. METHODS: This study is a retrospective review of children with blunt torso trauma in an academic emergency department (ED) between 2011 and 2019. Patients were considered positive for the PECARN rule if they exhibited any of the variables. Clinician suspicion was defined as actual CT ordering of the treating physician. The primary outcome was IAI-I detected by imaging or surgery within 1 month after the trauma, and the secondary outcome was any intra-abdominal injury (IAI) presence. RESULTS: Among the 768 children included, 48 (6.25%) had intra-abdominal injuries and 21 (2.73%) of whom underwent acute intervention. Four hundred and fifty-three (59%) children underwent abdominal CT scanning. If the PECARN rule had been applied, 232 patients would have undergone abdominal CT. The rule revealed 90.48% (95% CI=68.17-98.33%) sensitivity for IAI-I and 81.25% (95% CI=66.9-90.56%) for IAI. Clinician suspicion revealed sensitivities of 100% (95% CI=80.76-00%) and 93.75% (95% CI=81.79-98.37%) for IAI-I and IAI, respectively. Sensitivities of the rule and clinician suspicion were statistically similar for both IAI-I (p=0.5) and IAI (p=0.146). CONCLUSION: In this study, the PECARN abdominal rule and clinician suspicion performed similarly in identifying intra-abdominal injuries in children with blunt torso trauma. However, our study supports the use of PECARN abdominal rule in addition to clinical judgment to limit unnecessary abdominal CT use in pediatric patients with blunt torso trauma in the ED.