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Adrenal trauma: medical and surgical emergency
  1. Olivier Untereiner1,
  2. Claire Charpentier1,
  3. Bruno Grignon2,
  4. Pascal Welfringer1,
  5. Jean Garric1,
  6. Paul Michel Mertes1
  1. 1Surgery Intensive Care Unit, University Hospital, Hôpital Central, Nancy, France
  2. 2Radiologic unit Guilloz, University Hospital, Hôpital Central, Nancy, France
  1. Correspondence to Dr Olivier Untereiner, Surgery Intensive Care Unit, University Hospital, Hôpital Central, 29 Avenue du Maréchal de Lattre de Tassigny, C.O. no 34, Nancy 54035, France; o.untereiner{at}


A 35-year-old man was admitted to hospital in a state of haemorrhagic shock after a road traffic accident. A right adrenal gland injury associated with a retroperitoneal haematoma was diagnosed by CT scan. Haemostatic surgery (without adrenal gland resection) was performed instead of angioembolisation because of an associated abdominal compartment syndrome. The outcome was favourable. The objective of this case report is to illustrate the importance of the early diagnosis of adrenal gland injuries after trauma which, though uncommon and frequently overlooked or discovered fortuitously by CT scan, can be life-threatening. Angioembolisation or surgery may be necessary in cases of uncontrolled bleeding or the development of abdominal compartmental syndrome.

  • Trauma
  • abdomen
  • accidental
  • resuscitation
  • clinical care
  • diagnosis
  • emergency care systems
  • emergency departments
  • advanced practitioner
  • major trauma management
  • intensive care
  • musculo-skeletal

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  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Ethics approval This clinical case report refers to an emergency situation so Institutional Review Board approval could not be obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.