To evaluate the applicability of the Canadian CT Head Rule (CCHR) on head trauma patients in a German university hospital.
122 patients (m = 74; f = 48; 40 +/- 19 years) were examined with cranial CT due to minor head trauma. The need for cranial CT according to the CCHR was evaluated retrospectively.
With a sensitivity of 98.9 % and a specificity of 46.6 % all patients with the need for neurosurgical intervention were detected by applying the major criteria of the CCHR. Also, every patient with severe brain injury was detected by the extended criteria with a sensitivity of 99.6 % and a specificity of 34.1 %. This would have led to a reduction in the rate of cranial CT examinations by 45.1 % for the major and 22.1 % for the extended criteria. No patient with severe brain injury would have been missed by application of the criteria.
The Canadian CT Head Rule for patients with minor head trauma is applicable with a very high sensitivity and the potential of significantly reducing the rate of cranial CT examinations in these patients.