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Pancreatic trauma in Scottish children

Graham CA, O'Toole SJ, Watson A, Munro FD & Haddock G (2000) Pancreatic trauma in Scottish children. Journal of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, 45 (4), pp. 223-226.

Background: Trauma is the leading cause of death in children. Abdominal trauma is common, but there is little information on pancreatic injuries in UK children. The aim of this study was to investigate the clinical course of children suffering pancreatic trauma in Scotland. Methods: All children admitted to the three major Scottish paediatric surgery centres with evidence of pancreatic injury were identified. A retrospective case note review of these children was performed using a structured proforma. Results: 16 patients (11 males and 5 females), median age 7 years (range 1 - 11 years) were identified. The commonest mechanism of injury was the typical bicycle handlebar injury (10/16, 62%). Delays in definitive diagnosis were common due to subtle clinical signs. Increased serum amylase levels upon admission were not necessarily diagnostic for pancreatic injury. The diagnosis was confirmed by ultrasound scanning and/or computerised tomography in all patients. Ten patients (62%) developed pseudocysts and, in seven cases, they settled with non-operative management. There were no deaths and no long-term complications. Conclusion: Pancreatic injury in children is rare, and a high index of suspicion is required to make the diagnosis. The commonest mechanism of injury is a direct impact to the epigastrium, typically the bicycle handlebar injury. Presentation and diagnosis are frequently delayed. The incidence of pseudocysts is high, but most can be managed conservatively.

pancreas; paediatric; trauma

Journal of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh: Volume 45, Issue 4

Author(s)Graham, Colin A; O'Toole, Stuart J; Watson, Angus; Munro, Fraser D; Haddock, Graham
Publication date31/08/2000
PublisherRoyal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh
Publisher URL…45_4/4540020.htm
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