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Survivors of cut throat injury in a developing country

Author: 
Nwosu Jones Ndubuisi, Agu Kenneth Amaechi and Chime Ethel Nkechi
Subject Area: 
Health Sciences
Abstract: 

Introduction: Literature search, showed few studies on cut throat injuries from this part of the world though the problem appears not uncommon. This study was undertaken to determine, in those who reached the hospital, the causes, presentation, management and outcome of cut throat injuries in Enugu, southeast Nigeria. Methods: It was a retrospective study of all the patients with cut throat injuries who presented and were managed at the department of Otorhinolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery of the Hospital from January 2010 to December 2015. Results: Fourteen cases were studied, 11 males and 3 females with a ratio of 3.67:1. The ages were 18-69 years with a mean age of 32.50 (SD 13.87) years. Attempted suicide 8(57.1%) was the commonest presentation. The other causes were homicidal injury 4 (28.4%) and 2 (14.3%) cases of accidental injury. Psychiatric illness (35.7%) was the commonest underlying cause of suicidal attempt while motor vehicular crashes (14.3%) was responsible for the 2 accidental injuries. Armed robbery attack, fights during land disputes, domestic violence and sexual assault were the causes of homicidal injury. Most of the injuries 12(85.7%) occurred in Zone 11 area of the neck. Emergency tracheostomy was done in all the patients. This was followed by prompt exploratory surgical intervention with resultant 100% survival. Conclusion: suicidal attempt was the commonest presentation in patients with cut throat injuries. Early presentation, prompt intervention with adequate treatment produced good outcome.

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