Chest radiographic appearances in severely burned adults. A comparison of early radiographic and extravascular lung thermal volume changes

M. T. Chrysopoulo, R. E. Barrow, M. Muller, S. Rubin, L. N. Barrow, D. N. Herndon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Chest radiographs (CXRs) have previously been used as a diagnostic tool to detect changes in lung water. In this study CXR changes in severely burned adults, in the absence of an inhalation injury, preceded detectable increases in extravascular lung thermal volume (ELTV) by 3 to 5 days. The hypothesis that early CXR density changes in burned patients have an infectious cause, not related to changes in ELTV, was tested. Blood cultures, CXRs, and ELTV were evaluated during the first 15 days after injury in severely burned adults who had no identified inhalation injury. Chest radiographs were scored daily on a i to 5 scale, with 1 = normal, 2 = peribronchial cuffing, 3 = mild interstitial infiltrates, 4 = severe interstitial infiltrates, and 5 = alveolar infiltrates. In all patients, except those who were septic, increases in their CXR density scores correlated well with increases in ELTV. The ELTV/CXR score ratios for septic burn patients on days i to 6 postburn was 1.7 ± 0.2 compared with 4.2 ± 0.4, (means ± SEM) for nonseptic (P < .001), whereas the ELTV/CXR score ratios for septic and nonseptic patients, 7 to 15 days postburn, were 3.8 ± 0.4 and 3.4 ± 0.5, respectively. We suggest that before any measurable change in ELTV early increases in CXR density scores in burned patients without a concomitant inhalation injury are caused by intraalveolar pneumonitis or hyaline membrane atelectasis and not increased ELTV.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)104-110
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Burn Care and Rehabilitation
Volume22
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Nursing(all)
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Rehabilitation
  • Health Professions(all)

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