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Acute traumatic injuries of the adrenal gland: results of analysis of the Pennsylvania trauma outcomes study registry
  1. Jody C DiGiacomo,
  2. Noam Gerber,
  3. L D George Angus,
  4. Swapna Munnangi,
  5. Sara Cardozo-Stolberg
  1. Surgery, Nassau University Medical Center, East Meadow, New York, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Jody C DiGiacomo; jdigiac1{at}


Background Blunt injuries to the adrenal glands are considered rare, associated with severe injury, and highly mortal, based on autopsy series and earlier retrospective reviews. Recent studies have reported higher incidence rates associated with lower injury severity and mortality rates.

Methods A 3-year review of the Pennsylvania Trauma Outcomes Study Registry of adults with intra-abdominal injuries after blunt trauma was performed and associated organ injuries, injury parameters and in-hospital mortality were compared between those with and those without adrenal gland injury.

Results 5679 patient records were identified, 439 with adrenal gland injuries and 5240 without. The liver and the kidney were the intra-abdominal organs most frequently associated with injuries to an adrenal gland, and the spleen was the intra-abdominal organ most frequently injured in those without an adrenal gland injury. There was no difference in mortality rates.

Discussion Injuries to the adrenal gland occur with an incidence of 0.43% after blunt force trauma. The presence of a blunt adrenal gland injury is not a marker of severe injury or associated with an increased mortality rate.

Level of evidence II, Retrospective Study.

  • wounds and injuries
  • multiple trauma
  • morbidity

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  • Contributors JCD and LDGA provided conception and design, interpretation, article development, and critical review. NG and SC-S provided data collection and article development. SM provided statistical analysis and critical review.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval This study was reviewed by the Nassau University Medical Center Institutional Review Board, protocol number 16–096, as exempt.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement Data may be obtained from a third party and are not publicly available. These data were provided by the Pennsylvania trauma systems foundation, Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, USA. The foundation specifically disclaims responsibility for any analyses, interpretations, or conclusions.

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