Trends in Operative Complex Middle and Upper Maxillofacial Trauma: A 17-Year Study.

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

The Laryngoscope


california; pacific neurosciencse; psjhc; santa monica


OBJECTIVES/HYPOTHESIS: Over 3 million incidents of facial trauma occur each year in the United States. This study aims to determine trends in operative middle and upper maxillofacial trauma in one of the largest US cities.

STUDY DESIGN: Retrospective case-control study.

METHODS: Retrospective chart review of all operative middle and upper maxillofacial trauma from July 1993 to July 2010 presenting to Los Angeles County Hospital, a Level I Trauma Center. Data included demographics, mechanism of injury, and fracture characteristics.

RESULTS: Analysis was performed for a total of 4,299 patients and 5,549 facial fractures. Mean patient age was 34.6, and most patients were male (88%). Between the two time periods (1993-2001 and 2002-2010), there was a 42% reduction in operative maxillofacial trauma (3,510 to 2,039). Orbital floor and zygomaticomaxillary complex fractures were the most prevalent types of fractures. Panfacial fractures demonstrated the largest reduction in number of fractures (325 to 5, P

CONCLUSIONS: Operative middle and upper maxillofacial trauma decreased over a 17-year period. Assault was the most significant mechanism of trauma overall. These trends suggest that focusing future prevention strategies on curtailing interpersonal violence may more effectively address the burden of facial trauma.

LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 3 Laryngoscope, 2021.

Clinical Institute

Neurosciences (Brain & Spine)