Challenges Associated With Spinal Trauma Cases In Radiography (A Case Study Of University Of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), National Othorpedic Hospital Enugu (NOHE) And Enugu State University Teaching Hospital (ESUTH))

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This Research Work is on

Challenges Associated With Spinal Trauma Cases In Radiography (A Case Study Of University Of Nigeria Teaching Hospital (UNTH), National Othorpedic Hospital Enugu (NOHE) And Enugu State University Teaching Hospital (ESUTH))


This research work was aimed at assessing the challenges that are associated with spinal trauma cases in radiography using UNTH, NOHE and ESUTH as case study.
It is a non experimental, questionnaire based research. A total of 48 questionnaires were filled and returned and the respondents were radiographers including interns and youth corpers.
This result of the research showed various challenges that radiographers encounter while examining patients with spinal trauma. Some of the challenges include lifting and transferring of patients to couch, non cooperation of patients among others.

The research also showed some of the methods that radiographers employ to overcome these challenges.

Table: 1 Age and Sex distribution of practicing radiographers
Table:2 Educational level of the radiographers
Table: 3 Spinal trauma patients come on trolley
Table: 4 Spinal trauma patients aided by nurses/ward attendant into the department
Table: 5 Spinal trauma patients cooperate with instructions
Table: 6 Response on equipment consistency
Table: 7 Response on processor consistency
Table: 8 The most challenging region in x-ray imaging of spinal trauma patients
Table: 9 The most challenging category in x-ray imaging of spinal trauma patients
Table: 10 Attitude of radiographers towards spinal trauma patients

Title page
Certification page
List of tables
Table of contents

1.0 Introduction
1.1 Background of study
1.2 Statement of problems
1.3 Objectives of the study
1.4 Significance of the study
1.5 Scope of the study
1.6 Review of the related literature

2.0 Theoritical background
2.1 Role of radiography in trauma care
2.2 Equipment used in trauma radiography
2.2.1 Dedicated equipment
2.2.2 Features of trauma equipment
2.4 Anatomy of the spine
2.4.1 The vertebrae
2.4.2 Spinal cord

3.0 Research methodology
3.1Design of study
3.2 Population of study
3.3 Instrument used for data collection
3.4 Procedure for the data collection
3.5 Method of data analysis

4.0 Data presentation, Discussion and Summary
4.1 Data presentation
4.2 Discussion of data
4.3 Summary of findings

5.0 Recommendations, Areas for further study, Limitations and Conclusion
5.1 Recommendations from the study
5.2 Areas for further study
5.3 Limitations of study
5.4 Conclusion

The practice of radiography entails sound scientific knowledge and technical skills founded upon theoretical concepts, utilizing of equipment and accessories consistent with the purpose for which they have been designed, employing procedures and techniques appropriately, with effective patient interaction to provide quality care and useful diagnostic information.

One of the ethical requirements of radiographers is to provide quality patient care and services unrestricted by the concern of personal attributes or nature of disease.1 This, he achieves most times through the adequate co-operation of the patient. However, at some other times, patient co-operation becomes difficult and compromised as observed with most fractured patients, accident and emergency cases, unconscious patients and generally in trauma cases. It is still expected of radiographers to produce images of reasonable diagnostic quality in the above cases. This, most times, poses serious challenges to radiographers during radiological procedures especially the young radiographers and student radiographers who are less versed in clinical practice.
Spinal cord trauma can be caused by any number of injuries to the spine. They can result from motor vehicle accidents, falls, sports injuries (particularly diving into shallow water), industrial accidents, gunshot wounds, assault, and other causes.
For all health care professionals, mental preparation and communication are key factors when dealing with trauma situations. Usually trauma patients and the health care team are anxious and don’t know what to expect. Effective communication by radiographers is essential so the imaging process is effective and as stress-free as possible. Any problem with communication, major or minor, will affect the outcome of the case. Many aspects of dealing with a trauma situation are taught in the radiography curriculum: anatomy, image production, positioning and patient care. However, effective communication in stressful trauma situations is seldom taught. Unfortunately, it is usually learned by hard experience. It is expected that images be produced without causing further harm to patient3.
Besides mental preparation and effective communication, there are also necessary modifications we adopt when confronted with cases of trauma. These range from equipment selection and orientation, factor selection, patient positioning and the use of positioning accessories/aids. Also of utmost importance is the maintenance of a sterile environment as trauma can be exposed and thus, have increased chance of contamination. However, the positioning principles for trauma cases are similar to those applied for routine general radiography. The primary difference can be summarized with the word adaptation. Each trauma case and situation is unique and the radiographer must evaluate the patient and adapt4. The challenges associated with imaging in spinal trauma cases by radiographers have not been assessed in the institutions under study and this has prompted me to embark on this research.


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