Utilization of Computed Tomography in Temporal Bone Fractures at a Large Level I Trauma Center

Mikhaylo Szczupak, Adam Kravietz, Jaimin Patel, Ariel Grobman, Charif Sidani, Michael E. Hoffer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives/Hypothesis: To identify which patients with temporal bone fractures who have already undergone trauma pan-scan computed tomography (CT) do not require an additional dedicated temporal bone CT. To determine the added cost of dedicated temporal bone CT in a lower-risk group of patients. Study Design: Retrospective chart review. Methods: A chart review was conducted of adult patients at a large level I trauma center with temporal bone fractures who underwent both trauma pan-scan CT and dedicated temporal bone CT. Patients were risk stratified into lower- and higher-risk groups based on imaging and physical exam findings. Imaging findings regarding five critical anatomic structures were compared between the two types of CT scans. Results: There were 180 patients who met inclusion criteria, with 120 patients stratified to the lower-risk group. The negative predictive values of trauma pan-scan CT within the lower-risk group for fracture involvement with the five critical anatomic structures were as follows: otic capsule (1.000), carotid canal (0.960), facial nerve canal (1.000), ossicular chain (0.992), and tegmen (0.856). The annual out-of-pocket cost to patients for dedicated temporal bone CT imaging in the lower-risk group was estimated to be approximately $34,000, for a total of $190,000 during the complete study period. Conclusions: Trauma pan-scan CT may be sufficient in lower-risk patients to identify temporal bone fracture involvement with critical anatomic structures of the temporal bone. Reductions in dedicated temporal bone imaging will decrease both radiation exposure to trauma patients and strain on radiology departments. Level of Evidence: 4 Laryngoscope, 131:E278–E282, 2021.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E278-E282
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2021


  • Temporal bone fracture
  • computed tomography
  • cost analysis
  • ossicular chain discontinuity
  • otic capsule

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Otorhinolaryngology


Dive into the research topics of 'Utilization of Computed Tomography in Temporal Bone Fractures at a Large Level I Trauma Center'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this