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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Blunt Chest Trauma Causing a Displaced Sternal Fracture and ST-elevation Myocardial Infarction: A Case Report

  • Author(s): Nasser, Keaton
  • Matsuura, Jaclyn
  • Diep, Jimmy
  • et al.

Introduction: Blunt chest trauma and motor vehicle collisions are common presentations to the emergency department (ED). Chest pain in a trauma patient can usually and reasonably be attributed to chest wall injury, leading to a potential delay in diagnosis and treatment.

Case Report: In this case report, we present a 52-year-old male who was brought to the ED with complaints of chest pain and pressure after a motor vehicle collision. He was subsequently found to have both a displaced sternal fracture and simultaneous acute myocardial infarction with 100% occlusion of the mid left anterior descending artery without dissection requiring stent placement.

Conclusion: Chest pain after blunt cardiac trauma is a common complaint. While rare, acute myocardial infarction must be considered. Most injuries result as direct trauma to the artery causing either dissection or acute thrombosis resulting in a myocardial infarction as opposed to acute plaque rupture with thrombosis, as seen in this case.

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