Original Article

Comparison of Chest Computed Tomography and Chest X-Ray in the Diagnosis of Rib Fractures in Patients with Blunt Chest Trauma


  • Rasih Yazkan
  • Gökhan Ergene
  • Cumhur Murat Tulay
  • Sedat Güneş
  • Serdar Han

Received Date: 23.10.2011 Accepted Date: 06.02.2012 Eurasian J Emerg Med 2012;11(3):171-175


The purpose of this study was to compare computed tomography and chest X-ray in the diagnosis of rib fractures in patients with blunt chest trauma.

Materials and Methods:

A total of 83 patients with blunt chest trauma who were treated in three hospitals between May 2010 and June 2011 and who had received both chest computed tomography scan and chest X-ray as part of their initial assessment were included in the study.


The number of rib fractures was 2.15±2.12 on chest X-ray, however, on chest computed tomography the number was 3.75±2.35. There was a significant difference between the chest X-ray and the computed tomography (p<0.001).


Chest computed tomography is the best and a significantly more sensitive radiological method than chest X-ray in the detection of rib fracture, and it should be routinely used in the initial assessment of chest trauma. However, chest X-ray can be a suitable method in follow-up period.

Keywords: Computed tomography, chest X-ray, rib, fracture