J Korean Soc Traumatol.  2014 Dec;27(4):95-100. 10.0000/jti.2014.27.4.95.

Practical Approach to the Diagnosis of Pediatric Nasal Bone Fractures

  • 1Department of Emergency Medicine, Inje University Sanggye Paik Hospital, Seoul, Korea. scoh@paik.ac.kr


Nasal bone fractures are the most common childhood facial bone fractures, with an incidence of about 39%. While taking a nasal bone x-ray is a common modality used in the emergency department, reports have expressed concerns with its low sensitivity and low specificity. Our study was aimed at comparing accuracy of physical and x-ray examination with that of facial bone computed tomography (CT).
Electronic medical records (EMR) were retrospectively reviewed for patients under the age of 15 who visited our emergency department from January 2010 to December 2011with a chief complaint of nasal pain due to trauma and who had also undergone a nasal bone x-ray and facial bone CT. Patients who had not taken facial bone CT, who had been transferred, and who did not have EMR were excluded. We divided the patients into 2 groups, those who had nasal bone fractures and those without a fracture on their facial bone CT. We analyzed other parameters such as age, sex, and type of fracture to find statistical differences between the two groups.
A total of 209 patients were included. The patients with nasal bone fractures on their facial bone CT were older, and their traumas were more violent. Ten patients who had apparent nasal bone fractures on their facial bone CT had no definite signs of a fracture on their plain x-ray.
Though facial bone CT is an effective modality in detecting nasal bone fractures, in evaluating younger patients suspected of having nasal bone fractures, prudent use of facial bone CT is needed to reduce unnecessary exposure to radiation.


Nose; Fracture; Computed tomography; Pediatrics

MeSH Terms

Electronic Health Records
Emergency Service, Hospital
Facial Bones
Nasal Bone*
Retrospective Studies
Sensitivity and Specificity
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