Management of Blunt Pulmonary Injury

Author(s): John J. Gallagher, RN, MSN, CCNS, CCRN, RRT

Contact Hours 1.00

CERP A 1.00

Expires Dec 01, 2018

Topics: Pulmonary, Trauma

Population: Adult

Role: Staff

Member: Free
NonMember: $10.00

Added to Collection

Activity Summary

Thoracic injuries account for 25% of all civilian deaths. Blunt force injuries are a subset of thoracic injuries and include injuries of the tracheobronchial tree, pleural space, and lung parenchyma. Early identification of these injuries during initial assessment and resuscitation is essential to reduce associated morbidity and mortality rates. Management of airway injuries includes definitive airway control with identification and repair of tracheobronchial injuries. Management of pneumothorax and hemothorax includes pleural space drainage and control of ongoing hemorrhage, along with monitoring for complications such as empyema and chylothorax. Injuries of the lung parenchyma, such as pulmonary contusion, may require support of oxygenation and ventilation through both conventional and nonconventional mechanical ventilation strategies. General strategies to improve pulmonary function and gas exchange include balanced fluid resuscitation to targeted volume-based resuscitation end points, positioning therapy, and pain management.


  • Define the term blunt injury.
  • Compare and contrast the pathophysiology and treatment of pneumothorax, hemothorax, and pulmonary contusions.
  • Describe the roles of volume resuscitation and positioning therapy in the treatment of blunt trauma injuries.

Continuing Education Disclosure Statement

Successful Completion

Learners must attend/view/read the entire activity and complete the associated evaluation to be awarded the contact hours or CERP. No partial credit will be awarded.


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