Grade III liver laceration in a female volleyball player

Abby E Milton, Kevin Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A 20-year-old female collegiate volleyball athlete (body mass, 74.8 kg; height, 177.8 cm), with no previous history of abdominal injury, dove for a ball during a match and was struck in the anterolateral abdominal region by a teammate's knee. She experienced a solar plexus spasm, shortness of breath, and nausea. On-site evaluation revealed sharp pain in the right upper quadrant and epigastric area, pallor, continued nausea, and excessive sweating. Upon arrival to the emergency department, an abdominal/pelvic computed tomography (CT) scan with intravenous contrast showed a small amount of fluid along the posteromedial surface of the liver indicating a subcapsular hematoma. A trace amount of free fluid in the right paracolic gutter and pelvis was also noted, suggesting a hemoperitoneum. The athlete was diagnosed with a grade III laceration (> 3 cm parenchymal depth) on the right lobe of the liver. She was hemodynamically stable and vital sign values were normal ~2.5 hours postinjury (blood pressure, 118/76 mm Hg; heart rate, 68 beats per minute; respiratory rate, 16 breaths per minute; tympanic temperature, 36.3°C). The athlete was admitted into the intensive care unit for observation, and the attending physician decided on a conservative, nonoperative approach to treatment. Forty-eight hours postinjury, a second abdominal/pelvic CT scan was ordered and revealed no increased bleeding or extensive damage to the liver. Two days later, after being discharged from the hospital, she was prohibited from practicing until a third abdominal/pelvic CT scan was performed and showed no residual injury to the liver (5 weeks postinjury). The athlete returned to play 6 weeks postinjury without complications; however, she continued performing rehabilitation focusing on cardiorespiratory endurance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)150-152
JournalSports Health
Volume5
StatePublished - 2013

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