Introduction : Hard tissue facial trauma is considered uncommon in the pediatric population worldwide, with only a few reports considering a significant number of patients. The aim of this study is to describe the frequency and general characteristics of craniofacial fractures in a group of Chilean children aged 15 years or less.
Design: Retrospective study of case notes.
Methods: The authors reviewed the clinical records of 293,090 patients who attended to the Emergency Room of Children’s Hospital Exequiel González Cortés, in Santiago de Chile, between 2006 and 2009. All records of patients who sustained maxillofacial fractures were selected. The following parameters were evaluated: age, sex, cause of injury, day and month of hospital admission, place of incident, anatomical location of fracture, and presence and location of associated injuries.
Results: A total of 496 records of patients who presented 496 maxillofacial fractures were found. Males outnumbered females in all types of fractures. School age children or older were the most affected. The main cause of injury was falls. Nasal bones were the most common site of fracture, followed by the mandible bone. Ophthalmic and cranial injuries were the most frequent associated injury.
Conclusions: Facial fractures are relatively uncommon in Chilean pediatric patients, but can cause significant morbidity. The results obtained in this retrospective study resembled those reported worldwide, especially in terms of frequency of pediatric fractures, sex distribution and cause of injury.
Conflict of interest: None declared.