: High-grade blunt hepatic and/or splenic injuries (BHSI) remain a great challenge for trauma surgeons. The main aim of this study was to investigate the characteristics, mortality rates, and outcomes of high-grade BHSI in motorcyclists and car occupants hospitalized for treatment of traumatic injuries in a Level I trauma center in southern Taiwan. Methods
: High-grade BHSI are defined as grade III-VI blunt hepatic injuries and grade III-V blunt splenic injuries. This retrospective study reviewed the data of 101 motorcyclists and 32 car occupants who experienced a high-grade BHSI from 1 January 2011 to 31 December 2013. Two-sided Fisher’s exact or Pearson’s chi-square tests were used to compare categorical data, unpaired Student’s t
-test was used to analyze normally distributed continuous data, and Mann–Whitney’s U test was used to compare non-normally distributed data. Results
: In this study, the majority (76%, 101/133) of high-grade BHSI were due to motorcycle crashes. Car occupants had a significantly higher injury severity score (ISS; 26.8 ± 10.9 vs. 20.7 ± 10.4, respectively, p
= 0.005) and organ injured score (OIS; 3.8 ± 1.0 vs. 3.4 ± 0.6, respectively, p
= 0.033), as well as a significantly longer hospital length of stay (LOS; 21.2 days vs. 14.6 days, respectively, p
= 0.038) than did motorcyclists. Car occupants with high-grade BHSI also had worse clinical presentations than their motorcyclist counterparts, including a significantly higher incidence of hypotension, hyperpnea, tube thoracostomy, blood transfusion >4 units, LOS in intensive care unit >5 days, and complications. However, there were no differences in the percentage of angiography or laparotomy performed or mortality rate between these two groups of patients. Conclusions
: This study demonstrated that car occupants with high-grade BHSI were injured more severely, had a higher incidence of worse clinical presentation, had a longer hospital LOS, and had a higher incidence of complications than motorcyclists. The results also implied that specific attention should be paid to those car occupants with high-grade BHSI, whose critical condition should not be underestimated because of the concept that the patients within in a car are much safer.