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Arterial injuries in civilian practice in Lagos, Nigeria

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Abstract:

Objective: This is a retrospective study of patients managed at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital for peripheral arterial injuries from January 1995 to April 2003. The aim was to study the pattern of peripheral arterial injuries in Lagos, Nigeria and to look at the outcome of management and see what improvements could be made in future. Method: Data was collated from case notes of patients, operation register in theatre and admission and discharge books from the surgical wards and the data bank of consultants involved in patients' management. Result: Forty-one patients, 37 males and 4 females, were treated within the study period (M:F ratio of 9:1). Twenty three patients (56.1%) suffered gunshot injuries during armed robbery attacks while 9 patients (22.0%) had stab injuries in civilian violence. Twenty-one patients (3 with gunshot injuries and 18 non gunshot penetrating injuries) were managed by direct suturing of vessels. Eight patients had prosthetic graft interposition while 2 patients had reversed saphenous vein grafts. Two patients had the superficial branches of their radial arteries tied up at the wrist. Conclusion: Gun shot injuries from armed robbery attack was the commonest cause of peripheral arterial injuries in this environment during the period of study.

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